According to a report in El Periodico de Aragon, a Spanish local paper, Toronto FC have shown interest in Real Zaragoza winger James Igbekeme as a potential TAM signing. Although the deal does not appear to be particularly close (or making much progress), it’s the first name we’ve heard with regard to TFC’s transfer targets after Alejandro Pozuelo.
Igbekeme is a 23-year-old winger from Nigeria, with the unbelievably cool nickname of “Black Panther,” according to his Wikipedia entry. His profile would certainly fit the bill for what TFC are after.
However, the report from Spain suggests that the Segunda Division club have scoffed at TFC’s offer for the player. He’s apparently under contract with Zaragoza until 2022, and it looks like he has a release clause of 10 million euros. El Periodico reports that TFC offered closer to the 1.5 million euro range. Zaragoza may be a little hesitant to let him go at the moment, considering they’re currently in a relegation battle — only four points clear of the drop zone with 11 games to go.
Igbekeme has only been with Zaragoza for a year, signing in June 2018. He’s made 29 appearances for the club (according to Transfermarkt), scoring once and notching two assists. He’s left-footed as well, and it seems like he can play either out wide or more centrally.
This seems a little unlikely at the moment, but TFC are definitely looking at a number of potential TAM signings right now — Igbekeme is just the only one we know of so far.
This is the goal he scored, by the way: