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Roma and Milan Competing for Kessie

Twenty somethings usually make horrible decision.

AS Roma v Atalanta BC - Serie A Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Due to my duties here and CdT, I don’t have the time to follow other leagues as closely as I’d like, which is really no big deal except when I pontificate upon the tendencies and trends of other club’s transfer policies; I simply don’t have the time or resources to keep tabs on foreign spending habits. That being said, I can’t imagine Monchi got into many €30+ million bidding wars for 20-year-old midfielders while he was running the show and Sevilla, but that’s the exact predicament in which he currently finds himself.

A few short weeks ago we passed along reports that Roma had actually come to terms with Atalanta and Franck Kessie, setting up the framework of a €28 million transfer, with Kessie penning a five-year €1.4 million per year deal. And while the final figures were bound to be different, it appears as though Roma had landed their and man, and that the new Yaya Toure was heading to the Giallorossi.

However, as so often happens in these situations, another club has entered the fray and muddied the waters. The interlopers this time hail from the red and black side of Milan, as the newly minted AC Milan are attempting to throw around their new Chinese capital at Kessie, upping the stakes to a reported €35 million, though that hasn’t been verified. Milan have the further advantage of....what’s that word?..stability. Yeah, that’s it. They even know who their manager will be next season!

So despite the fact that Roma have (hopefully) Champions League football to offer Kessie, Milan, due to that stability on the pitch and a potentially clearer path to playing time, may have the upper hand in these negotiations.

Now is the part where I must caution you about the last time Roma went down this path, throwing tens of millions and a relatively unproven twenty-something, Juan Iturbe, but Kessie should not be, by most accounts, even mentioned in the same breath. The main caveat is simply this: Roma are not a club who can gamble a potential €30 million and lose on a kid. They simply don’t have the resources to paper over that crack.

The transfer market is a high stakes game, and right now Kessie is holding all the cards.