Burnley are reportedly ‘best played’ to sign £17 Metz striker Georges Mikautadze despite interest from Juventus, AC Milan and Premier League rivals Arsenal and Wolves.
That is according to Le Quotidien du Sport; the French publication reporting that the Georgia international is still likely to be on his way out of Metz despite firing les Grenats back into Ligue 1 with a Golden Boot-winning tally in 2022/23.
Georges Mikautadze was not only the second-tier’s top scorer, but it’s Player of the Year too.
And, after being priced out of a move a year ago, Burnley suddenly find themselves in a far stronger bargaining position thanks to the riches that only Premier League football can provide.
Clarets boss Vincent Kompany confirmed his interest in Mikautadze shortly after taking over from Sean Dyche at Turf Moor in 2022. At the time, however, the Lyon-born poacher was simply too expensive for a team facing up to a season of Championship football.
“It is a difficult one,” Kompany told Lancs Live last August. “There are some players that are out of our range financially. For us, (Mikautadze) is a player who is probably out of our range.”
Mikautadze, who scored 23 goals in all competitions in 2022/23, could potentially replace Nathan Tella in Lancashire. The former Burnley loanee returned to parent club Southampton at the end of May.
Burnley also lost Ashley Barnes on a free to Norwich City.
In addition to Wolverhampton Wanderers, some of Europe’s bonafide big-hitters have reportedly shown an interest in 22-year-old Mikautadze too. Arsenal among them. AC Milan, meanwhile, failed with an opening bid of £9 million earlier in the window.
Burnley are also chasing additions at the other end of the pitch. A new goalkeeper is required, and Kompany could turn to Royal Antwerp’s Jupiler League champion Jean Butez as Bart Verbruggen nears a £17 million move to Brighton and Hove Albion.
“I’m not going to deny it; my ambition is to take a step higher and there are opportunities to make a transfer,” Butez tells RTBF . “I am now 27 years old, and this might be the ideal time for a transfer.
“But even if I stay, the summer will be a success for me, because I may be able to discover the Champions League with Antwerp next season.”