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Lyon set deadline of June 30 for transfer of coveted midfielder

At least this won’t drag on until August!

Olympique Lyonnais v Manchester City - UEFA Champions League Group F Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

The season is officially over for the players, but the transfer market is already cooking and Tottenham Hotspur are reportedly bidding on a few targets. Tanguy Ndombele, one of the most coveted midfielders in Europe, is at the top of the wish list along with Giovani Lo Celso. With no stadium problems to distract him and armed with Uncle Joe’s American Express card, Daniel Levy looks ready to actually buy players and strengthen the squad.

Today’s rumor regarding Ndombele comes to us from Le10, who are stating that Spurs have bid but haven’t come near Lyon’s valuation...and Lyon have a deadline of June 30.

En effet, l’OL aimerait que le transfert de Ndombele soit bouclé avant la fin du mois de juin, pour qu’il soit inclus dans les comptes du club avant la clôture annuelle, qui est fixée au 30 juin. L’Olympique Lyonnais ne devrait donc pas s’accrocher absolument à ce prix de 80 millions, mais transiger un pieu à la baisse si les Spursreviennent avec un tarif revu à la hausse.

If you don’t speak French, the summary is simple: Lyon’s valuation is closer to €80m, while Spurs’ recent bid was reportedly €60m. Lyon Chairman Jean-Michel Aulas, who is basically French Levy, is trying hard to grandstand and drum up interest in Ndombele. If this seems weird, it’s because it is. Last year, Ndombele was one of those “worst kept secrets” in Europe but Lyon had set the valuation so high that nobody sniffed it. Everyone wanted to see if he progressed another year.

It’s safe to say he did:

Now, this isn’t meant to be a poke at Moussa Sissoko, who had a great season being asked to play a role that should have been impossible for anyone. He somehow pulled it off, but these numbers suggest that Ndombele is a fantastic talent and just 22 years old. Yes, he played in Ligue 1 but also in the Champions League and did very well.

Aulas’ problem is that nobody other than Spurs have really shown serious interest. Juventus have reportedly called but no official bid has been lodged according to most credible sources. GFFN on Twitter stated that Juve had made a bid, but L’Equipe stated that it wasn’t true. Manchester City, long thought to be interested in him, have even cooled off and turned their sights to Rodrigo, who currently plays for Atletico Madrid. Aulas went as far as to publicly say PSG should bid for the player, but the French giants haven’t reciprocated and have locked into Lazio’s Sergej Milinković-Savić. If this trend continues, Aulas may be forced to bend to Levy at a lower price than his valuation.

If this sounds familiar at all, it’s because these two have locked horns a couple of times. The transfer of current captain Hugo Lloris in 2012 ended on deadline day with Levy getting the French #1 for a club-friendly fee of just around £10m. Aulas exacted a little revenge with the Clinton N’Jie transfer a few years later, but round three is going to be on a much grander scale.

The good news in all of this is that Spurs have targeted a player that can truly improve their midfield and are doing it early in the window. Lyon’s self-imposed June 30 deadline more than likely means Lyon want to get Ndombele’s transfer on their 2018 fiscal report to stabalize their numbers. If nobody comes into the picture besides Spurs, this all plays to Levy’s advantage and he can try and strong-arm Aulas. Now, I don’t want him to drag this on over a few million pounds. Get the deal done, but definitely get him at a good price if you can.

We’ll see how this shakes out, but don’t expect the rumors to slow down.