Barnet have rejected a six-figure bid for athletic winger Idris Kanu as per Pete O’Rourke.
Barnet’s number 11 recently made his 50th appearance for Barnet and he has scored 12 goals in that time despite being used as a hybrid winger/wingback for large portions of last season when the Bees’ other recent departure, Sam Beard, was injured.
Kanu has great pedigree at youth level as he broke into West Ham’s Under 21 side at just 15 years of age. He also played for Manchester United’s Under 18 side as a trialist in the 16/17 U18 Premier League season and, despite scoring two goals, he wasn’t given a contract which led to him signing with Aldershot Town. He made over 30 appearances and scored 3 goals for the Shots even though he was just 16 when the season started.
This prompted Peterborough United to sign Kanu for an undisclosed fee in August 2017 but he was never able to nail down a regular starting spot at the club despite being there for 5 seasons. Funnily enough, it was a Barnet man moving to Peterborough in Ephron Mason-Clark which prompted the Bees’ move for Kanu. The move back into non-league was a chance for Kanu to resurrect his career at the level he started at and he took this second chance with both hands, becoming arguably the most vital player in Dean Brennan’s complex system last season. During that time, he also become a full international as he made two appearances for Sierra Leone, further adding to his pedigree.
Kanu came to Barnet when his stock was at an all-time low which left many fans, including myself, unworried about the possibility of him leaving the club. But, he has been such an outstanding performer that EFL clubs already seem prepared to give him his second chance in the football league.
The Sierra Leone international was a player I was worried about during preseason as I felt that Dean Brennan’s new system which required the attacking midfielders to be much more narrow wouldn’t play to his strengths. However, he has already begun to prove me wrong as he has shown an ability to get into pockets between the opposition’s midfield and defence and spin into wide areas and one-on-one situations which he thrives in. It has led to Kanu getting four goal contributions in his first four games and he seems as vital a player as any to the side.
With the Bees currently sitting pretty in 1st place in the National League, they may feel under less pressure to let Kanu go and Kanu may be sceptical about moving after he has found a manager who is able to get the best out of him.
Barnet’s financial position will also be reasonably strong given the incomings and outgoings at Peterborough United this summer. Ryan De Havilland departed North London to join Peterborough for an undisclosed fee this summer and, given the strong relationship between the clubs due to Barry Fry, it is likely to have been a more than fair deal for Barnet financially. Additionally, Jack Taylor has departed the Weston Homes Stadium this summer and the Bees may be set to benefit from a sell-on clause in his contract. Similarly, rumours continue to swirl about young centre-back Ronnie Edwards who has been nicknamed ‘new stadium‘ by Darragh McAnthony due to the transfer fee Peterborough want for him, the 20-year-old was also signed from Barnet.
Overall, I think Dean Brennan and Co. will do everything they can to keep Kanu and they seem to be in a good position to do so financially. But, if the player decides he wants to go, it will leave Brennan with a more than sufficient sum which he can use to replace him and Barnet fans should have full trust in the Irishman’s recruitment after the last two summers.