Tottenham issued with come-and-get-me plea in pursuit of Pochettino target
By North-west correspondent Alex Stevens
Marseille have admitted that Tottenham priority target Michy Batshuayi will leave the club this summer.
The French club’s interim manager Franck Passi has made it clear that the prolific striker will be available for transfer in the forthcoming window.
Tottenham are one of a number of elite clubs closely monitoring the 22-year-old Belgium international.
“Everybody knows that he will leave,” Passi said, as quoted by the Evening Standard. “It is included in the accounts that Michy will be sold this summer.
“We will accept it. We know why players leave Marseille, the financial services are not so enticing, we have to accept it.”
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Spurs are in the market for a new forward in the summer, with West Brom’s Saido Berahino high on their priority list.
Batshuayi has also caught the north Londoners’ attention with his performance for struggling Ligue 1 side Marseille.
The 22-year-old has scored 21 goals and supplied 10 assists in 48 matches in all competitions this season, including 16 goals and nine assists from 35 Ligue 1 encounters.
A well-placed Tottenham source has told Football Insider that scouts watched Batshuayi in action for Marseille in last Saturday’s clash against Stade Reims.
Spurs manager Maurcio Pochettino is keen on a detailed assesssment of Batshuayi, including how he performs in more difficult assignments against the stronger teams and away from home.
Pochettino told French radio station RMC Sport a fortnight ago that Batshuayi is one of the strikers on Spurs’ radar as they look to bolster a forward line heavily reliant upon Harry Kane.
“We look for a striker this summer,” Pochettino said, when asked specifically about Batshuayi. “This player is young and has a lot of talent. We are following him. Logically, he should be on the list of many clubs.
Liverpool and West Ham have been strongly linked with the prolific striker, but Spurs could have an advantage over their Premier League rivals.
Batshuayi is likely to prioritise clubs playing in the Champions League if he decides to leave Marseille at the end of the season.
Marseille are 13th in Ligue 1 after a poor campaign and there is a growing expectancy that they will cash in on one of their prize assets in the summer.
As reported by Football Insider, Liverpool legend Steve Nicol is convinced that Batshuayi, who is rated in the £20million bracket, could join the growing ranks of Belgium internationals in the Premier League next season by replacing Christian Benteke.
In other Tottenham transfer news, Thierry Henry is convinced the club will lure big-name signings in the forthcoming windows.