Reported Tottenham Hotspur target Mohammed Kudus admits he ‘spoke’ to Everton manager Frank Lampard before Ajax turned down a £15 million bid from the Premier League club last summer, speaking to Star Connect on Joy TV, writes the HITC.
There are worse headaches to have.
Does Ghana boss Otto Addo start Kudus as a centre-forward during their World Cup opener against Portugal on Thursday? Or, perhaps, as a central midfielder? Kudus, during an outstanding season at Ajax, has proven himself equally capable in both roles; embarking upon a hitherto unseen purple patch in a more advanced position at club level.
And when you consider how drastically Lampard’s relegation-threatened side have underperformed in the final third in recent weeks, Kudus’ tally of 10 goals in just 21 Ajax games this season must feel like salt in Everton wounds.
“I was really close to joining Everton,” Kudus explains. “I thought it was a good project for me and I felt I should try it. It wasn’t like this season was my first (at Ajax), it was my third. So if I’m not getting the progress I’m looking for then why not try something else?”
Everton, per The Independent, submitted a £15 million bid before the close of the summer window, Kudus opting to stay put after being convinced of his role by Ajax coach Alfred Schreuder.
The former Barcelona assistant has had his fair share of critics since replacing Erik Ten Hag at the Johan Cruyff Arena. But his decision to turn a previously underperforming midfielder into a prolific penalty-box poacher is worthy of praise.
Schreuder was not the only coach who held talks with Kudus over the summer either.
“I spoke to Lampard,” adds the former Nordsjaelland talisman. “I had a chat with him to find out the project they had for me, what he thought about me and how he saw me as a player, because definitely that would be the green light for me to decide whether I wanted to move.
“Without the coach, there is nothing.”
According to Corriere dello Sport, Tottenham now plan to keep tabs on Kudus over in Qatar. Antonio Conte is prioritising a new attacking midfielder in January, with Atalanta’s Ruslan Malinovskyi another on Spurs’ radar.