The English club Norwich FC, which has just been relegated from the Premier League to the second division, commonly known as the Championship, would like to get my hands on Ismaël Koné.
Frédéric Lord and Patrice Bernier reflect on the consequences of the departure of the young midfielder from CF Montreal in the podcast « XI MTL », recorded on Wednesday. Listen to this week’s episode here:
What should Koné do? Such an offer is hard to refuse, underlined Bernier, since one never knows if another such opportunity will present itself one day.
“When I was playing, I was always told that those opportunities don’t always come twice. You never know. An injury is always around the corner. If the opportunity is there, why not?
« I don’t know what Koné’s intentions are, but he clearly wants to go to the next level. The Championship is still a very good springboard. Richie Laryea has allowed himself to leave Toronto FC and go to Nottingham Forest. It remains to be seen what his intentions are. Is this the Premier League? La Liga? The Bundesliga? We should know where he wants to play one day and if a transfer to England would bring him to his goal.
« It’s not easy to say no »
Bernier speaks from experience, having left the Montreal Impact in 2003 to try his luck in Europe. If he was in Koné’s shoes, he would jump at the chance.
“When I left for Norway, my goal was to make myself known and then to play in a big league. I had to walk through the door, but I didn’t know where that was going to take me. My dream was to play in La Liga, but I wouldn’t have said no to playing in the Premier League. I would not have refused to move to another level and, at the same time, to improve my financial situation.
« For a player, it’s not easy to say no to leave. »
But beware, warns Bernier, the grass is not necessarily greener next door. Adapting to a new environment can be quite a difficult operation.
Experience, an invaluable asset
That’s why he believes, as an analyst and not as a player, that it would be better for Koné to gain more experience. After all, the 20-year-old Canadian international has just 18 MLS games behind the tie, having just made his promising debut on the Garber Tour this year.
“It’s better to harden up, gain experience and get to know each other well to leave confident in your skills and earn your place elsewhere, supports the ex-midfielder. When you arrive in another environment, it’s another competition. You become a foreigner, you have to earn your place and get used to a new culture. In addition, your family and friends are no longer close.
“It would be better if he had 50 games of experience and had proven himself to be among the elite of MLS. Koné has just gained momentum. I would like him to leave knowing that he is ready to move on to the next level. If he shows by the end of the season the same things as at the beginning of the year and he scores goals, the teams will want to buy his potential. On the other hand, the opportunities can change from year to year, recalls Bernier. It remains to be seen at what price CF Montreal is willing to let him go.
Clubs other than Norwich FC have also shown interest in Koné, who has scored one goal and two assists so far this season in MLS.
The Ivorian-born player represented the maple leaf for the first time this year. He was cleared from the scoresheet in two FIFA World Cup qualifying matches.
Quioto, what brilliance!
In addition, later in the podcast, Frédéric and Patrice also return to the extraordinary season of striker Romell Quioto and to some interesting questions asked during the meeting with CF Montreal season subscribers on Monday evening.
Koné and his teammates will play their next game on Saturday against New York City FC at Stade Saputo. This confrontation will be presented on TVA Sports starting at 6:30 p.m.
Summary of the podcast:
- 1st minute : Should Ismaël Koné leave MLS for England? What are comparable transfers?
- 18th minute : What is the true identity of CF Montreal? Quite the opposite of Toronto FC! « The huge difference is that CF Montreal is an intelligent team that will look for players with potential and not confirmed guys at great expense. »
- 29th minute : Will Romell Quioto score more or less than 15.5 goals this season? The bets are open!
- 33rd minute : Update of the ranking of the league « XI MTL – La Forge du Malt ».
- 37th minute : Should CF Montreal move by the end of the transfer window on August 4?
- 43rd minute : Who are the favorites to win the Golden Boot?
- 47th minute : Frédéric and Patrice set the table for Saturday’s game against New York City FC and offer their predictions. « It will be a very good test for CF Montreal, » said Bernier.