Yesterday, rumors appeared in the Welsh football media ecosystem that Tottenham Hotspur’s 20-year old academy graduate striker Kion Etete was a transfer target for Championship side Cardiff City. Today, that rumor has turned into reality. Spurs and Cardiff announced on social media that Etete has moved to the Bluebirds on a permanent transfer. Etete completed a medical on Wednesday before the move was announced.
We have reached agreement with Cardiff City for the transfer of Kion Etete.
We wish Kion all the best for the future.
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) August 4, 2022
The deal isn’t for very much money. Alasdair Gold reports that the initial fee is just £500k plus some performance-based escalators. There was no mention of any future sell-on fee, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that one doesn’t exist.
The low transfer fee tells me a couple of things. First, Cardiff don’t have a lot of money; that makes sense based on yesterday’s reporting that said Cardiff have already made thirteen (!!) signings this summer, all on free transfers. Secondly, this tells me that neither Etete nor Tottenham believe that Etete has a clear path to the first team under Antonio Conte. That makes sense too, considering Harry Kane is still chugging along, and the club has both Troy Parrott and Dane Scarlett waiting in the wings.
I’m honestly a bit surprised that Etete is landing at a Championship club as he’s still pretty raw as a footballer and definitely untested at that level. He had his first loans last season in both League Two and League One, and while he did capably well in both of them it’s a bit of a risk for a club like Cardiff, which finished 18th in the Championship, to spend actual money on a players like him. But he’s a big lad — 6’4” — and while you can teach skills, you can’t teach height. If Cardiff are looking for an absolute unit up top to propel them higher in the table, well, it could be worth the risk. If I had to guess, I’d say that Championship level is probably his ceiling, but hey I’ve been wrong before.
Etete’s an interesting prospect, but he wasn’t going to make it at Tottenham so this is a very good move for him. I hope he fulfills his promise and wish him well.