Paratici to play Tottenham ace card as Milan star snubs latest contract offer

Ismael Bennacer, Franck Kessie AC Milan Spezia v AC Milan February 2021

AC Milan are growing increasingly concerned they could lose Franck Kessie on a free transfer next summer following news that the midfielder has rejected their latest new contract offer.

The Serie A giants have already been stung this summer, having lost both Hakan Calhanoglu and Gianluigi Donnarumma on a free transfers. The pair, both seen as hugely saleable assets, moved as a free agent after failing to agree extensions.

And with just a year left on his arrangement at the San Siro, fears are mounting that Kessie could also leave without a fee.

That’s obviously a scenario Milan are desperate to avoid. As such, talks over a new deal have been ongoing for some time.

Indeed, sensing an opportunity, Spurs are among several sides keeping a close eye on developments.

And those hopes appear to have enhanced amid news from Italy that Kessie has rejected Milan’s latest proposal.

As per La Gazzetta dello Sport, the Ivorian midfielder has rejected a new deal worth €6.5m a season. Furthermore, there is a growing sense of pessimism that Kessie will instead look to walk away as a free agent next summer.

Keen to avoid that scenario, Tottenham chief Fabio Paratici is reportedly ready to play an ace card. Per reports, the Italian has already sounded Milan out over a potential cut-price deal in January.

While they would be free to sign him to a pre-contract agreement from January 1, Spurs are said to be looking to appease Milan by paying a small fee for the midfielder now.

And while it could still cost them around £10m, Paractici is of the mind that by offering a fee now, it would enhance their prospects of getting a deal done.

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As per La Gazzetta, Spurs are not the only ones looking to snare Kessie. They claim both Liverpool and PSG are keeping a close watch on his situation with regards a free move next summer.

Kessie is said to be seeking a salary of around €8m a year, which equates to around £130,000 a week.

And that’s a package Spurs would be willing to pay the midfielder, given he’s rated at around £35m.

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Kessie hints at Milan stay

Speaking earlier this year, the midfielder revealed that he would prefer to stay in Milan.

He said: “I’m proud to have chosen Milan and my intention isn’t to leave.

“On the contrary, I want to stay forever. Now I have the Olympics, but when I come back I will sort everything.”

However, La Gazzetta is adamant that a parting of ways is on the cards.

Kessie’s financial demands appear above what Milan are willing to pay. But knowing he’s a man in demand, his representatives reportedly believe those needs could be met elsewhere.

It remains to be seen though whether Paratici’s attempts to get a deal done in January pay off for Tottenham.

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