Tottenham Hotspur are ready to pounce for Paris Saint-Germain striker Mauro Icardi – although they will have to fend off two clubs trying to take him back to Italy.
Icardi is very much a man in the headlines at the moment, for reasons both on and off the pitch. He is believed to be separating from his wife Wanda Nara, who also acts as his agent. The situation should he seek a transfer will thus be rather complicated.
The Argentine forward has fallen down the pecking order in Paris following the acquisition of Lionel Messi, who forms part of the French giants’ ideal front three along with Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.
As a result, Icardi could consider his future after hitting double figures in each of his previous two seasons in the French capital.
Tottenham have been linked with Icardi for a while, likely in the event that Harry Kane leaves. Whether the England captain will eventually get the transfer he sought in the summer is something only time will tell. But if he does, Spurs have a strong idea of who to turn to.
At the age of 28, Icardi should be in the prime of his career. Therefore, he will not want to spend it on the bench.
For now, it seems he has bigger problems to address in his life than his footballing career, but even so, speculation continues regarding the latter.
According to Gazzetta Dello Sport, Icardi will leave PSG regardless of what happens with Wanda Nara. In doing so, he will “ignite” the transfer market due to the wide interest in his services.
The report, by transfer expert Alfredo Pedulla, names Tottenham as one of three challengers for his signature. The others will be Juventus and AC Milan.
Neither destination would make Icardi too popular with fans of his former club Inter Milan, with whom his relationship was already beginning to strain before his departure in 2019.
But Inter’s attempts to prevent a future transfer to their rivals, by way of a clause in his contract, have expired. Therefore, Icardi will be able to choose wherever he likes as long as someone makes an appropriate bid to PSG.
If Tottenham get a big fee for Kane, they would be able to afford the former Sampdoria star – whose current salary is around €7.3m net per season.
But Icardi “has admirers everywhere”, the report states, so it will not be a clear path to his signature.
Juventus – Fabio Paratici’s former club – are evolving their attack after the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo in the summer. Even while the returning Man Utd ace was still there, they were looking for a new centre-forward.
Milan, meanwhile, still rely on Zlatan Ibrahimovic as a goal-getter. He is in great shape for a 40-year-old, but won’t last forever. Therefore, they are searching for a successor and could try to lure Icardi back to the city.
Icardi to Newcastle an option
Another club to be linked with Icardi recently was Newcastle, fresh from their Saudi-backed takeover.
The Magpies now have the financial power to compete for high-calibre players, although they must also convince them of their sporting project.
Currently in the relegation zone, it may be hard to attract big names immediately. But that won’t stop them trying.
Icardi was recently suggested as a target, with centre-forward an area they could be looking to strengthen.
Joelinton has been disappointing, Dwight Gayle is nearing his twilight years, and Callum Wilson is reliable in front of goal but has had injury issues.
Icardi would be an upgrade on any of them. And Gazzetta do mention the idea of a transfer to St James’ Park.
Instead, though, it mainly seems to be a battle between Tottenham, Juventus and Milan at present.