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‘Big blow’: Manager admits £19m Everton target is leaving, reportedly wants Tottenham

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Fenerbahce coach Jorge Jesus is disappointed to learn of Kim Min-Jae’s impending departure amid reports linking the defender with Premier League duo Everton and Tottenham Hotspur, speaking via Calciomercato. 

Calling all football club owners; When a new manager arrives, it’s probably best to let him know ahead of time that you’re planning for life without one one of his star players before the season even begins. 

Clearly, former Benfica, Sporting Lisbon and Flamengo coach Jorge Jesus didn’t get the memo. 

It is no secret that Kim, so often compared to Virgil van Dijk due to his colossal frame and wonderful passing range, has his fair share of admirers. Fanatik reported earlier in the summer that Everton, Spurs and Napoli had all made their interest known. 

And Fenerbahce, must to Jesus’ frustration, appear powerless to prevent Kim from packing his bags. The presence of a £19 million release clause in his contract swiftly removes any illusion of power out of Fener’s – and Jesus’ – hands. 

Will Kim Min-Jae replace Kalidou Koulibaly at Napoli?

“His transfer was planned,” sighs the veteran tactician. “But it was a surprise for me. I heard (about Kim’s exit) two days ago.  

“Unfortunately, our club can’t do anything about it. We can’t keep him. The club interested in him will pay the termination clause in the contract. It was a big blow to learn it. 

“We have other players of excellent level. But Kim has important qualities.” 

Photo by Mustafa Ciftci/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

According to reports in Italy, Kim is dreaming of a move to North London. One that would see him link up with fellow South Korea international Heung-Min Son under Antonio Conte’s watchful eye at Tottenham. 

The most likely destination appears to be Napoli however. The third club named in that Fanatik report.

The Serie A giants have identified the former Beijing Guoan man as a readymade replacement for Kalidou Koulibaly, who left for Chelsea couple of days ago. 

“Kim? I know him very well,” says former Napoli ace Gokhan Inler, who played against the sky-scraping central defender in Turkey. 

“I think he should be signed immediately. If Napoli buy him, they will have a lion. He has no weaknesses.” 

Chelsea paid £33 million for Koulibaly.

Photo by Franco Romano/NurPhoto via Getty Images
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