The Chronicle reports that Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United both sent representatives to the game – and it is understood that CSKA forward Aaron Olanare was the reason for their city trip to Lisbon.
The 23-year-old Nigerian international only arrived in Moscow on a free transfer in January after spending three years hoovering up the dough and scoring plenty of goals in the Chinese Super League with Guangzhou R&F.
And despite scoring just one goal in 15 games for the Russian champions, Olanare’s pace and power has ensured that he remains highly coveted by clubs in England. The report adds that both Spurs and Newcastle watched the striker in action during CSKA’s qualifying clash with Young Boys of Bern too.
Premier League ready?
Unfortunately, however, Olanare did not locate his shooting boots in CSKA’s impressive 2-1 away win on Tuesday and was replaced by matchwinner Timur Zhamaletdinov with 25 minutes remaining.
Olanare failed to manage a single shot on goal against the Portuguese giants and recorded only 19 touches of the ball, the lowest of any player to start the game from both sides.
However, reports that Tottenham are interested suggest that Olanare does indeed have plenty of potential. After all, Spurs have a reputation for unearthing real gems in the transfer market and the promising centre-forward would be a welcome addition with Mauricio Pochettino’s side lacking depth in the striking department.
Newcastle, too, could do with attacking additions as Joselu, Dwight Gayle and Aleksandar Mitrovic are the only goalscorers at Rafael Benitez’s disposal.
Yet, a 23-year-old striker with just one goal in 15 games is hardly the kind of ambitious signing Newcastle fans, and Benitez, are craving.