AC Milan legend Alessandro Costacurta does not fear losing Franck Kessie to Premier League suitors Tottenham Hotspur, Newcastle United and Aston Villa, telling Gazetta dello Sport that this is ‘not Kylian Mbappe’ we’re talking about.
What do Mbappe and Kessie have in common? Well, both are set to become free-agents. And following high-profile transfer sagas, look certain to depart when their current deals expire in July 2022.
But while Kylian Mbappe appears to have one foot in Madrid already, Kessie’s future remains very much up in the air.
Confidence high after completing the January signings of Lucas Digne and Philippe Coutinho, Aston Villa have their sights firmly fixed on another high-profile deal.
According to Il Milanista, the best offer on Kessie’s coffee table is the one from Villa Park.
Newcastle, Tottenham and Barcelona are still in the running however (TWM).
And while Kessie would be a loss for Milan – the furious reaction from Rossoneri supporters to his potential departure is proof of that – one would imagine that the Serie A leaders would be able to find a new midfielder capable of emulating Kessie’s impact at the San Siro.
Can AC Milan survive without Franck Kessie?
“Milan can do without the Ivorian midfielder,” says Costacurta, a three-time UEFA Champions League winner with the Rossoneri.
“He is important, but a replacement can be found. He’s not Mbappe…
“I see fewer and fewer irreplacable players around, except Mbappe. Franck, like many others, is important but not decisive. Absolutely replaceable.
“(Sandro) Tonali is more important than him. Even (Mike) Maignan or (Olivier) Giroud.”
Kessie wants £160,000-a-week at his new club. AC Milan are refusing to bow down to those demands and, as they proved during the summer of 2021, they’d sooner bid farewell to a star player then break the bank.
Both Gianluigi Donnarumma and Hakan Calhanoglu departed on free-transfers and Milan – leading the Serie A title battle and having beaten both Inter and Napoli in recent weeks – have come back stronger than ever.