Tottenham battle familiar Paratici rival for overshadowed PSG attacker

Date published: Tuesday 5th October 2021 4:58 - Samuel Bannister

Rafinha and Mauro Icardi at PSG training

Tottenham Hotspur are one of two contenders already established in the race to sign a Paris Saint-Germain forward next summer, according to reports.

Finding a new striker could be a priority issue for Tottenham again in 2022. It was already in the back of their minds when Harry Kane was pushing for an exit this year. His form since has not warranted their decision to turn down huge offers for him. Hence, they have been advised by some to sell at the next available opportunity.

It still seems like something the club would be reluctant to do. Kane is under contract until 2024 and it seems his current form will just be a blip. But if he once again indicates a desire to leave, Tottenham may have to reconsider their stance.

If he leaves, he will be a tough act to follow. Having proven himself as one of the best strikers in the world during his time with the club, finding a suitable successor will not be easy. But they would have funds to spend and could target another big name.

According to Calciomercato, Tottenham would be interested in Mauro Icardi of PSG next summer.

Icardi was one of the most prolific marksmen in Serie A during his time with Inter Milan. However, his time with them ended on a sour note after being stripped of the captaincy. A transfer became the only solution, leading to PSG’s opportunity.

The Argentine scored 20 goals in his debut season in France and 13 in his second. But he is no longer a guaranteed starter there following the arrival of Lionel Messi. His compatriot, on paper, would play alongside Neymar and Kylian Mbappe in PSG’s strongest frontline.

Therefore, there was the idea of Icardi being a casualty of Messi’s arrival this summer. He stayed put for now, but could be up for sale again in 2022, as forecasted by Calciomercato.

The Italian website claims Icardi has two suitors at this point: Tottenham and Juventus. That could see Spurs managing director Fabio Paratici going head to head with his former employers in Turin.

When selling Icardi, Inter were keen to ensure he didn’t end up with their rivals further down the line. It is believed, though, that a clause they put in his contract to prevent such a deal has now expired.

Mauro Icardi, PSG goal celeb

Juventus could therefore be able to sign Icardi and take him back to Serie A. They are still in the process of reshaping their squad following Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to Manchester United. Icardi would be exactly the kind of player they need to help fill the void.

But it seems Tottenham are also thinking about the 28-year-old. It would be an ambitious move depending on where they can finish by the end of the season, but an exciting one if it was at all possible.

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Tottenham turn focus from Vlahovic

In other news, Spurs have seemingly been ruled out of the race to sign Dusan Vlahovic from Fiorentina.

La Viola have confirmed they will have to find a solution for the Serbian striker, who will not be signing an extension to his contract. It expires in 2023.

He is already one of the most in-demand players across Europe and has several suitors in the Premier League. Tottenham were one of the main ones when preparing for the worst with Kane over the summer. They are likely to still possess an interest.

But Tuesday’s European papers revealed Spurs have little chance of getting their man without an immediate upturn in their fortunes.

Vlahovic is keen to play at the highest level possible and Spurs only have Europa Conference League football on offer this season. Their aim is to reach one of the two superior European competitions by the end of the season. But as of yet they cannot convince the 21-year-old.

Instead, it looks likely to be a straight battle between Liverpool and Manchester City for his services.

Dusan Vlahovic of ACF Fiorentina in action during the pre-season friendly football match between ACF Fiorentina and Polisportiva

Both clubs could consider signing a new centre-forward to make them even more powerful. Liverpool have got by with Roberto Firmino as a false nine, but he is becoming less effective there. Diogo Jota seems to be surpassing him in Jurgen Klopp’s hierarchy.

Even so, an extra, more natural centre-forward could really make a difference.

The same goes for City who have been experimenting with a false nine system since the exit of club legend Sergio Aguero in the summer. Gabriel Jesus can play up top but has featured out wide on occasion this season.

The champions would add an extra dimension with the addition of a recognised target man like Vlahovic – or indeed Kane if they are still interested.

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