Report: Why Tottenham decided against signing Leeds new boy Weston McKennie in January
Tottenham Hotspur were interested in signing Weston McKennie in January, but the move never materialised.
Now, a report from The Athletic has shared more details about why the 24-year-old didn’t end up in north London.
It was a panicked, but ultimately quite positive transfer window for Tottenham.
The arrival of Arnaut Danjuma and Pedro Porro fulfilled the main positions Spurs were looking to fill.
Plenty of their young players, such as Bryan Gil and Djed Spence, were sent on loan to gain valuable first-team minutes.
One transfer Tottenham fans didn’t see coming was the termination of Matt Doherty’s contract.
A limit on international loans meant Spurs had to either let the Irishman go 18 months before his contract expired, or keep him at the club.
It was a shock even to Doherty’s teammates that he left the club on a permanent basis on deadline day.
One player who Tottenham didn’t end up signing was American international Weston McKennie.
The 24-year-old instead joined Leeds United on an initial loan, with a 30m fee agreed for the summer.
He had previously said he ‘dreamed’ of playing for Tottenham, but he joins an American cohort at Elland Road instead.
Why Tottenham turned down signing McKennie
The report from The Athletic provides more details on the McKennie situation.
‘Spurs also kept an eye on Leeds United’s new signing Weston McKennie, but again that was only relevant if a midfielder left.
‘A couple of good performances from [Pape Matar] Sarr in January, plus the return to fitness of Rodrigo Bentancur, decreased that possibility.
‘Paratici had signed McKennie for Juventus.’
There was talk of Oliver Skipp potentially leaving the club on loan in January.
Ironically, Leeds were linked with a move for Skipp, that could have seen Tottenham try and sign McKennie instead.
However, despite falling below Sarr in the pecking order, Conte wanted to keep him.
McKennie would suit an Antonio Conte system, and could deputise for either Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg or Rodrigo Bentancur.
Tottenham will be keeping a close eye on McKennie after signing for Leeds to see how he adapts to the Premier League.
If he kicks on, it may be another case of a missed opportunity in the transfer market for Spurs.
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