Scottish giants Rangers have entered the race to sign Wigan Athletic hot-shot Kyle Joseph, according to the Sun on Sunday (10/01, page 58).
The 19-year-old has emerged as a real talent in the Latics’ recent struggles, and has taken over the mantle from Joe Garner as the number-one striker at the DW Stadium.
Joseph netted his first Wigan goal last month in a shock 1-0 victory away at Sunderland, and then the Scotland youth international grabbed headlines last week when smashing in a hat-trick against Burton Albion.
With Wigan stars leaving left, right and centre and a takeover still not finalised, the best talents are likely to be poached for prices under their real value, as seen at the start of the season when Antonee Robinson, Sam Morsy and Kieffer Moore were among those to depart.
The big festive Wigan Athletic quiz: Can you get 20/20?
Joseph is out of contract at the end of the season so Rangers can approach Joseph on a pre-contract arrangement or they could likely get him for a cheap fee, but they face competition from Premier League giants Tottenham Hotspur for his signature.
Spurs managed to prize away highly-rated Wigan youth star Alfie Devine in the previous transfer window, but they were knocked back by Joseph in the summer along with Sheffield United.
But it looks like they could be making a return for Joseph in this window, with The Sun reporting last week that Jose Mourinho was plotting a ‘second raid’.
Joseph represents a cheap gamble for any club right now, and one that is probably worth taking on.
He’s clearly got an eye for a goal judging by his recent hat-trick in League One, and considering he’s still a teenager, Joseph could develop into a Premier League player.
It would be no surprise if there ends up being a January auction for him – with the highest bidder prizing him away from Wigan.