The Guardian report that Chelsea have had a £21 million bid rejected for Atlanta’s highly rated 20-year-old holding midfielder Franck Kessie, as his agent George Atangana revealed:
“We have a lot of interest from the Premier League – Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal. I cannot say at this stage how much he will cost but we are talking about one of the best young players in the world. But for us the most important thing is that the technical project is the right one for him. Franck is very young so we have to be very careful about his development. Chelsea are very interested and it is a great club but we must take our time to consider all the options.”
The Ivory Coast international is highly sought after given his brilliant displays, which have also included seven goals in 17 games from a deep midfield role this season.
Another target could be Monaco midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko, who the Daily Star claim was personally scouted by Antonio Conte when the 22-year-old played for the French side against Tottenham in London, but he has spoken out to rubbish rumours of a January move, saying:
“I have had a good first six months, but the season is not over. I won’t leave Monaco this winter, that’s a certainty. I don’t want to leave. Of course the Premier League makes you dream, but I have no reason to leave this winter. Right now, I have two ambitions: finish champions of France and go as far as possible in the Champions League.”
Antonio Conte is clearly keen to add to his squad, but many of his targets are seemingly reluctant to move mid-season which may delay an overhaul of his squad.
One man desperate for a January move is Nigerian midfielder Mikel John Obi, as a source close to the player reportedly told ESPN:
“All the offers are getting serious consideration but it is first and foremost about project football, and not about money. That is why we are not considering the offer from China. He also has a young family that is very important to him and he does not want to cause any upheaval in their lives. Family is No. 1 priority for him in all this, so that is another reason for him to want to stay in Europe. We have to make sure that we make the best decision based on that. He is taking time to spend Christmas with his family. After that, a decision will be made.”
Mikel reportedly has offers from Valencia, Inter Milan and Marseille, with him currently pondering over which destination is best for his career.
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