Tottenham and Liverpool chasing Benteke after transfer request

Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool are leading the chase to sign Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke, the Daily Mail has reported, after the Belgium international handed in a transfer request and asked to leave Villa Park.

Arsenal and Atletico Madrid are also said to be in the hunt for Benteke, who is valued at around £25m by the Midlands club and has three years left on his current contract. Villa said in a statement released on Monday evening that while they are disappointed with Benteke’s request and will consider offers for him, they expect that if no acceptable offer is made he will remain with the club.

Manager Paul Lambert added: “While we’re hugely disappointed that Christian has put in a transfer request, it’s important that people appreciate we are trying to build something strong and vibrant here at the club, something this club demands and stands for, and we want Christian to be part of that.

Benteke moved to Villa last summer, signing from Belgian side Genk. The 22-year-old scored 19 goals in his first Premier League campaign, finishing the season as Villa’s top scorer, but will not be part of the club’s pre-season tour of Germany.

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