Chelsea are planning to hijack a move for Liverpool and Arsenal target Thomas Lemar in January, according to the Telegraph.
And the report claims Antonio Conte has a plan up his sleeve to offer Monaco players in exchange, either on loan or permanently, to get ahead in the queue.
This morning, L’Equipe reported that Liverpool were preparing an £88million January bid for the winger, who has struggled to maintain his form from last season.
The French outlet claimed that Liverpool and Arsenal were ready to revive their interest in the 22-year-old next month, after seeing summer bids fail for the France international.
Now though Chelsea are set to make a serious move for the wideman as Antonio Conte looks to strengthen his hand.
Any move would smash their transfer record, which stands at £57million for Alvaro Morata, to land £80million-rated Lemar.
Conte is more than happy to trade some of his players in a bid to get Lemar on board and they will hope that former Blues technical director Michael Emenalo’s departure to Monaco will make the deal happen.
Emenalo left Chelsea last month and was recently appointed as the French club’s sporting director and he will know all about the players, who will be available at Chelsea.
Monaco’s stance on Lemar, who has scored only once this season, has reportedly switched with the Ligue 1 champions now willing to sell the player.
The report claims they are planning to overhaul of their first-team squad and will sell Lemar to the highest bidder.
Lemar helped Monaco win Ligue 1 and reach the semi-finals of the Champions League last season, scoring 14 goals and grabbing 17 assists, but his form has dipped this term with Monaco nine points behind the leaders PSG.