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Chelsea dropped interest in 16-year-old Spurs prospect to avoid tapping up accusation — report

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The strange, controversial, shocking start to this week continues with another potentially scandalous claim that Spurs were going to report Chelsea on tapping charges in regards to 16-year-old Nya Kirby.

There's very little actual coverage of youth players at that age, but the story we heard this summer was that Kirby rejected Spurs' offer of scholarship and went on trial with several other London clubs, including Chelsea, Arsenal, and Crystal Palace.  He featured in at least a couple trial matches with us, but ended up not signing.

Eventually, Kirby ended up in Crystal Palace with a future fee payable to Spurs to be settled by a tribunal.  It was an unfortunate development in the sense that Kirby's a highly rated England youth international, but apparently he was seeking assurances that Chelsea could not provide.

But now, according to a report in The Times from Matt Hughes, it were Chelsea who dropped interest in Kirby after Spurs accused the Blues of tapping up.  Apparently Spurs didn't accuse either Arsenal or Palace, which doesn't quite fit the story too well, but who knows how these things ever end up going down.

The Times do chalk up at least part of this to "ill feeling" between the two clubs, including, but not limited to, Spurs losing the plot last May and also complaining about Steve Holland's potential dual role with England and Chelsea.  Spurs are also "understood to be concerned about what they regard as Chelsea's aggressive recruitment at academy level", which surely is a laughable concern that, if anything, should be directed at the ridiculous EPPP rules rather than a rival club.

In any case, Nya Kirby's now with Palace, so the joke's on Spurs, really, in the end.