Barcelona chief delivers blow to Tottenham Hotspur’s hope of signing Franck Kessie
The Ivory Coast international joined Barca on a free transfer this summer after running down his contract with AC Milan. He was part of a summer influx that saw names such as Robert Lewandowski, Jules Kounde, and Andreas Christensen added to their books.
But while the other new signings have settled in well, perhaps with the exception of Hector Bellerin, Kessie continues to struggle for meaningful playing time. He has played in just seven La Liga games this campaign which has amounted to 212 minutes of action.
These are not the numbers a 25-year-old midfielder in the prime years of his career would be ecstatic with. But despite his struggle to start regularly over the likes of Gavi, Pedri, Sergio Busquets, and Frenkie de Jong, the player wants to stay at Camp Nou.
Barcelona director Jordi Cruyff has issued a statement that neither Barcelona nor Kessie want to part ways. He said (h/t Fabrizio Romano):
“We do not plan to sell Franck Kessié — and the player does not plan to leave either”
Kessie is a strong box-to-box midfielder who can do the job at both ends of the pitch with distinction. He was a vital part of Milan’s 2021-22 Scudetto-winning side and it isn’t a surprise that a team like Barcelona were quick to pounce on him this summer.
But it’s hard to imagine that the Ivorian’s current situation wouldn’t come as a huge surprise to him. He would have known there will be competition and that Pedri and Gavi are two of manager Xavi Hernandez’s trusted young midfielders.
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He was probably added as a backup option to their team to strengthen their team and it isn’t a shock to see Cruyff admitting the team’s desire to keep him.