It has been quite an interesting 24 hours for Michy Batshuayi.
Marseille yesterday afternoon accepted a €38m plus bonuses proposal for the Belgian international from Crystal Palace.
This came as a surprise to many, including, according to sources contacted by GFFN, the player’s very own entourage.
Marseille President Vincent Labrune faces a race against time to raise €25m effectively by the end of the week in order to satisfy the French football financial watchdog, the DNCG, or his club could face punishments ranging from fines to points deductions, after failing to satisfy their auditing process last week.
As a result, Labrune’s move to accept an offer for Batshuayi at the beginning of the week is an attempt to force interested parties into making a bid themselves.
Batshuayi’s representatives have informed Crystal Palace that they have no intention of negotiating personal terms with this particular Premier League side at the moment.
Batshuayi sees himself in the Champions League next season and remains hellbent on a move to any side that can offer him that.
At the moment, the two most likely sides to be able to fulfil the Belgian striker’s requirements are Tottenham Hotspur and Juventus.
Juve have already submitted an offer for the player worth €34m plus certain bonuses and have been invited to up that proposal to match what is on offer from Crystal Palace by Marseille.
Tottenham Hotspur however are the side that have worked the hardest in terms of constant discussions with the player’s entourage over the last few months, with certain reports claiming recently that Batshuayi has already agreed a five year provisional contract with Spurs.
The captain of the Tottenham Hotspur ship Daniel Levy has developed a relationship with Vincent Labrune over recent seasons, with THFC already attempting to sign Batshuayi in January and a deal for Erik Lamela last summer that broke down on transfer deadline day being notable moments that the two chiefs have shared together.
Tottenham and Levy are very much aware of the financial predicament that Marseille find themselves in but are also aware that this is the right time to act or they face missing out on Michy.
That is why a first offer for Michy Batshuayi from Tottenham to Marseille is expected in the coming hours.
Unfortunately for Labrune, it is expected to be worth considerably less than Crystal Palace’s proposal and instead similar to the offer on the table from Juventus.
Batshuayi’s desire to join a side with Champions League football and the fact that there is a perfectly reasonable offer on the table from Juventus in the eyes of the player’s entourage have led to constant contact this week between Michy’s representatives and Marseille in an attempt to convince Labrune to budge.
It really is all down to Labrune: Michy will accept a move to Tottenham or Juventus, but what will Marseille do? Crystal Palace’s offer has but Labrune in a stronger position, but how can he convince Champions League clubs to match that bid when they know he desperately needs money and only €25m of it?
Let’s not forget about West Ham United, who have suffered comparable difficulties in trying to convince Batshuayi as Crystal Palace have in the last 24 hours. According to certain unconfirmed indiscretions, Slaven Bilic has attempted to establish a dialogue with Batshuayi, but his attempts have been turned down.
Atletico Madrid and Arsenal have been mentioned as other potential suitors, but neither side have put in the grunt work that Tottenham and Juventus have in recent weeks in terms of establishing a relationship with the player.
A bid from the former two sides mentioned is not impossible, but very unlikely.
An offer from Tottenham appears imminent, Labrune has some cards to play, notably in the form of Chelsea, who have come on extremely strong in recent hours…
Difficult for the Marseille striker not to be distracted right now…