KABONGO Tshimanga is being tracked by EFL clubs interested in a move for the striker when his contract expires this summer – but Oxford City will receive compensation.

The 21-year-old has been a revelation since joining last year, netting 28 goals for Mark Jones’s side.

That haul, which includes an Emirates FA Cup hat-trick at Sky Bet League Two’s Tranmere Rovers in November, has not gone unnoticed.

Exeter City were linked with a move in the transfer window, while Tshimanga was also on Oxford United’s radar.

But having kept hold of the former Milton Keynes Dons apprentice in January, Jones is resigned to losing City’s star man at the end of the season.

He said: “We’ve had a lot of interest in Kabby.

“I know it’s not the transfer window now, but we’re getting calls from clubs in the Football League, one League Two club in particular are very interested.

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“We have to understand where we are in the pecking order.

“There will be clubs much bigger than us who can offer him much more than we can – both in terms of a better league and also the financial side of it.”

The Vanarama National League South club will not be out of pocket, though.

While they have no expectations Tshimanga will sign, City will table a contract offer which means they will be eligible for a fee.

Jones said: “Because he’s under 24 we would be due some compensation, but there might be an opportunity that we could do a pre-deal with someone.

“I’m sure there will be clubs looking at that.”

It will be helpful on two fronts.

The extra revenue will boost City’s ongoing progress into paying down their debts, but also adds to their growing reputation as a club which nurtures young talent.

Teenage defender Udoka Godwin-Malife was sold to Forest Green Rovers in January, making his League Two debut last month.

Jones said: “We’re pleased with the development of the young players.

“I think we’ve got to look at that model as a club. We can’t compete by signing all the best non-league players, but what we can do is try to give a platform to good, young talent.

“I think it helps when you’re trying to attract players if we can say ‘we will give you a chance, it’s up to you to take it’.”