Jonathan David’s value is dropping.

Amid continued talk of AC Milan’s intent to sign Jonathan David this summer, La Gazzetta dello Sport reports that Lille would only be looking for €40-45 million ($58-65 million CAD) for the Canadian star in January or beyond, rather than the reported €60-70 million ($87-$101 million CAD) that would have made them consider a sale this summer.

Part of that is down to the fact that David’s contract expires at the end of next season, meaning that by the January window he will have less than 18 months remaining on his deal. Another factor is potentially that — so far, at least — he has slowed down in 2023-24. After scoring 24 goals in 37 games in Ligue 1 last season, he has netted just twice so far with a quarter of the French league season already in the rearview mirror.

He’s still a hugely talented player and a natural goalscorer, though, so it’s clear why Milan are keen.

Gazzetta claims that Milan have been admirers of David for years, even though they didn’t publicly make a solid move to sign the Canadian until this summer.

Now seems like the perfect time for them to push to sign the 23-year-old. Olivier Giroud has aged like a fine wine and continues to do so, but he is 37 and an heir is needed soon, if not now. Milan’s other leading forward, Noah Okafor, has made it clear that he does not see himself as a No. 9.

All that is prompting Milan to prepare a bid for January, and the new reported valuation of closer to €40 million than €60 million is thought to be much more practical for Milan.

Whether David would be keen on the switch is unclear but, on balance, you’d have to suspect he might. Milan are a clear step up from Lille, a team that consistently compete for the league title and are in the Champions League.

Rumours about David’s future were a constant thread in the summer transfer window, but nothing other than a late and ambitious loan bid from Milan materialized, largely due to Lille’s lofty valuation. More talk will persist over the coming weeks, and a potential transfer already looks more likely.