Tottenham Hotspur have reportedly been rebuffed in their pursuit of Franck Kessie, who has rejected advances from the North Londoners.
According to Calciomercato, Tottenham Hotspur have been handed a major blow in their pursuit of Franck Kessie. The AC Milan midfield powerhouse has lately emerged as the top target for Antonio Conte, who is keen on adding reinforcements in the midfield department in January. It prompted managerial director Fabio Paratici to accelerate the club’s pursuit of Kessie.
In recent days, Tottenham had even reached an agreement with AC Milan over a January move for the Ivorian. However, it appears the deal is on the verge of collapsing as the player has declined the opportunity to move on. He intends to remain at Milan until the end of the season, helping the club compete with Inter Milan for the Serie A title.
The Rossoneri are currently embroiled in a difficult title race with their cross-town rivals. They are currently trailing the defending champions by four points at the top of Serie A, with Napoli also involved in the equation.
Kessie believes his presence can greatly help the team keep up with the Nerazzurri. At the same time, he appears unlikely to prolong his stay at San Siro beyond the summer when his current contract comes to an end. It should essentially make him a free agent at the end of the season, giving him an opportunity to bag a more lucrative wage packet.
Tottenham had targeted Kessie as an ideal man to accompany Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg in the middle of the park. During his time at Milan, the former Atalanta starlet has showcased a lot of versatility in midfield and has often been quite effective going forward. It might have combined well with the defence-oriented Hojbjerg or even Oliver Skipp.
In addition, the Lilywhites are bracing themselves for the departure of a few of their star midfielders. Tanguy Ndombele is already subjected to a move away from Tottenham, with Paris Saint-Germain reportedly in advanced talks over a short-term loan deal.
Aside from the Frenchman, Giovani Lo Celso is also facing an uncertain future at the club. The Argentine has fallen out of favour under Conte and has recently attracted interest from Sevilla. Their potential departures could accentuate the need for a new midfielder, but with Kessie seemingly uninterested in a mid-season move to Tottenham, Conte may have to set his sights on other alternatives in the market.