Burnley target Boubacar Kamara pulls out of Metz squad for Ligue 2 clash

Burnley target Boubacar Kouyate pulled out of the Metz squad for their Ligue 2 clash with Valenciennes on Saturday night.

The 25-year-old has two years remaining on his contract with the Lorraine club, who he joined from Troyes in 2020, but, after a 5-0 final day loss to PSG, Metz were relegated to Ligue 2, and the Mali international has attracted interest from the Clarets and Salernitana, in their second season back in Serie A after 23 seasons away.

Koutaye played in the first two matches of the season in Ligue 2, against Amiens and Caen, but reportedly, ahead of the fixture with Valenciennes, told coach Laszlo Bölöni he wished not to be involved.

Salternitana recently opted to sign Koutaye’s Metz teammate, Tunisian central defender Dylan Bron, for €1.2m, having been prepared to pay around €7m for Kouyate.

Metz' Malian defender Boubacar Kouyate (R) fights for the ball with Angers' French forward Lois Diony during the French L1 football match between Football Club de Metz and Angers SCO at the Saint-Symphorien Stadium in Longeville-Les-Metz, eastern France on March 3, 2021. (Photo by JEAN CHRISTOPHE VERHAEGEN / AFP) (Photo by JEAN CHRISTOPHE VERHAEGEN/AFP via Getty Images)

Salernitana were also believed to have a contract offer worth approximately seven times what he earns at Metz.

In a sign of the times, Koutaye has also removed all mention of Metz from his Instagram account.

The suggestion is Metz want €10 for the 6ft 4ins centre back, with Burnley prepared to pay around half that, plus add ons.

Burnley have been searching for another centre back option, and had also been strongly linked with a loan move for Liverpool centre back Sepp van den Berg, who spent the last 18 months on loan at Preston, but Kompany admitted: “We’re talking about another club’s player, all I can say is Sepp is a really good player, but a key part of it is to find a balance between the players we’ve already got and the game time, making sure that we’re strong enough, and if I follow the progress of our team, I think it’s fair to say we have been defending well, in our own way.

“It has been effective, there’s been blocks, the line has worked hard, and we’ve got as back up lads like CJ Egan-Riley and Luke McNally, potentially guys like Lowton and Long, so I can’t give you a straight answer because it’s not that straight, it’s just making sure we’re covered enough for the long run but also making sure we’re not blocking anyone that is doing well, and we’re discussing this day in, day out.”