Chelsea and Manchester United have been put on red alert as Brighton & Hove Albion are reportedly willing to sell Kaoru Mitoma.
Football Transfers reports that the Blues, the Red Devils, and Manchester City are all showing interest in Mitoma. There is expected to be a tug-of-war for his signature in the summer.
Brighton are open to cashing in on the Japanese winger after signing Ibrahim Osman from Danish outfit FC Nordsjælland. The 19-year-old Ghanian attacker will arrive at the Amex this summer after the Premier League club sealed a £16 million deal (€19.5 million).
Mitoma has been unable to have the same impact for the Seagulls as he had last season due to an ankle injury. But, the tricky wideman has still registered three goals and six assists in 25 games across competitions. He’s recently been away at the Asian Cup with Japan.
Chelsea and Manchester United look set for busy summers as they look to rebuild their squads amid disappointing ongoing campaigns. Mauricio Pochettino was majorly backed last summer but his men have struggled for consistency.
A new center-forward is thought to be at the top of the west Londoners’ agenda. Napoli’s Victor Osimhen is being heavily linked but they could still look to improve out wide amid Raheem Sterling and Mykhaylo Mudryk’s struggles.
Meanwhile, Erik ten Hag will have the backing of Sir Jim Ratcliffe and his INEOS team following their purchase of a 25% stake in the club. They will oversee the Red Devils’ sporting operations and would need to sanction such a move.
Mitoma has been at Brighton since August 2021 and has become one of the Premier League’s most highly-regarded attacking talents. He’s bagged 13 goals and 14 assists in 66 games across competitions and has a market value of €50 million.
Chelsea and Manchester United target Kaoru Mitoma looked up to former Red Devils star Shinji Kagawa
Mitoma is making a name for himself in the Premier League with some sensational performances for Brighton. Last season, he caught the eye with seven goals and six assists in 33 league games. He played a key role in helping Roberto De Zerbi’s men qualify for the UEFA Europa League.
Chelsea and Manchester United appear eager to sign the 20-cap Japan international. He wants to leave a lasting legacy in the English top flight and follow in the footsteps of his Japanese predecessors.
One of those is former United winger Shinji Kagawa whom he touched on in an interview with Brighton’s official website in 2021:
“The quality of play is obviously very high, which Japanese football fans are particularly aware of. Shinji Kagawa being a part of Manchester United was a big thing in Japan. I hope to have as much success as my fellow Japanese predecessors in the Premier League or other European leagues.”
Kagawa spent two years at Manchester United from 2012 to 2014. He managed six goals and 10 assists in 57 games across competitions, winning the Premier League title in Sir Alex Ferguson’s last season in charge.