World Football

Yevhen Konoplyanka Agent Comments Amid Arsenal, Chelsea, Man United, Spurs Talk

CLUJ-NAPOCA, ROMANIA - SEPTEMBER 19:  Yevhen Konoplyanka of FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk in action during the UEFA Europa League group stage match between CS Pandurii Targu Jiu and FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk held on September 19, 2013 at the Cluj Arena in Cluj-Napoca, Romania. (Photo by Daniel Mihailescu/EuroFootball/Getty Images)
EuroFootball/Getty Images
Ben BlackmoreFeatured ColumnistNovember 14, 2013

The agent of Yevhen Konoplyanka, Ukraine’s exciting 24-year-old talent, says he is expecting a barrage of January transfer offers for the player amid strong interest from four top English clubs.

Konoplyanka, currently of FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, is the man who scored a thunderbolt for Ukraine in their 1-1 draw with England in the two sides’ Wembley World Cup qualifier.

According to Adrian Kajumba of the Daily Star, a quartet of English clubs—Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham—are all interested in securing the £15 million-rated attacker.

Agent James Lippett appears open to offers:

We are aware of the interest from a number of Europe's major clubs. This is only normal when you are talking about a star player like Konoplyanka.

He can do things on a football pitch that very few players can come close to, so we are expecting an interesting January.

There is no doubt Konoplyanka is one of the most exciting players to emerge from Ukraine since Andriy Shevchenko.

Operating largely off the left wing, Konoplyanka is a modern-day attacker who likes to cut infield onto his favoured right foot in order to threaten the heart of opposition defences.

Boasting a dangerous shot from distance, as displayed against England, Konoplyanka also has the pace and ability to draw defenders to him before slipping teammates into gaps goalside of their markers.

Of the four Premier League clubs linked to his services, only Chelsea have little need for the player.

Eden Hazard, Andre Schurrle and Willian can all play from that advanced role on the left flank, so Jose Mourinho would be best advised to spend his money on out-and-out strikers or centre-backs.

United and Arsenal have both found themselves short on the left wing this term. David Moyes has been forced to use Shinji Kagawa out of position on occasion, while Arsene Wenger has shunted Santi Cazorla out wide to cover for the injured Lukas Podolski.

 

However, Tottenham are arguably the club in most need of Konoplyanka’s talents. Since selling Gareth Bale the London club have found nobody to fill the void on the left flank, with Nacer Chadli doing little to impress since his summer arrival.

Aaron Lennon and Gylfi Sigurdsson have both filled in down the left, but the former is a natural right-winger while the latter is more comfortable in a central role.

Konoplyanka would offer the pace that Sigurdsson does not possess, mixed with plenty of creativity and a goalscoring threat, having scored eight times in 33 internationals.

He has another chance to impress in Friday's World Cup qualifying playoff against France. A match-winning display would surely beckon a January surge for his signature.

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