Ryan Sessegnon is one of the brightest young stars in English football and everyone knows it. The versatile 19-year-old Fulham player did well for the Cottagers last season, albeit in a bittersweet campaign as the London club went back down to the Championship in just one season despite spending over £70m on players in an effort to stay up in the top division.
Now, Sessegnon is making it clear he has no intention of playing in the Championship again. According to David Hytner at The Guardian, Sessegnon has informed Fulham he will refuse to sign a new contract and wants a move, specifically to Tottenham Hotspur.
But Sessegnon has made it clear that he wants to join Spurs, who have tracked him for the past few years, as he believes he would thrive under Mauricio Pochettino. The Spurs manager has an excellent track record for developing young English talent. Pochettino would like a deal for Sessegnon to be completed by 8 July, which is when his players will report for pre-season training.
This isn’t really new, but to hear it from The Guardian is about as solid sourcing as it gets. Hytner is quite in-tune with the sport, especially with London clubs. If he’s saying this is the case, you can throw the salt out the window. Also, we’ve known that Sessegnon has wanted to stay in London for personal reasons. This is simply saying the quiet part out loud.
So what can we expect from Daniel Levy in this saga? Hytner touches on it:
Fulham have mentioned a fee of £45m for a player who, despite his youth, has already made over 100 league appearances for them – including 35 in the Premier League over this past season, when they were relegated. Spurs, though, are not inclined to pay more than £25m and they know that Fulham would face the disastrous prospect of losing Sessegnon for only training costs if they did not do business now.
This makes a lot of sense. Sessegnon has just 12 months remaining on his contract and Fulham stand to lose a ton of money if they do not cash in on him now. They know he wants to leave and have to resign themselves to that fact. They also are not going to get £45m for him as that’s just wish-casting on their part. A fee around £30m makes sense in this case, especially if the rumors are true that his twin brother, Steven, becomes part of the package. Steven isn’t quite as accomplished as Ryan, but is a promising midfielder that Spurs would be happy to bring into the ranks.
Sessegnon is currently with the English U-21s at St. George’s Park, prepping for their European Championship that takes place in Italy this month. The team head to Italy next week but it’s not outlandish to think a deal could get done before then. Sessegnon would need permission to leave to do a medical in north London, in all likelihood, but that’s a mere formality.
Pay attention to this one as Pochettino has been a fan of the Fulham man for awhile now.