Chelsea are ready to pip Manchester United to the signing of Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata, according to a report in Spain.
United are widely believed to have agreed a fee of between £62m and £64million for Morata, but Real, after discovering they can get more for the forward, are not happy and want more.
And Catalan paper Sport claim that Chelsea are now ready to pay £66million for the 24-year-old to get to head of the queue with Diego Costa set to leave.
The report, which has come from a publication who are traditionally a Barca-supporting, is in stark contrast to mainstream reports suggesting Morata to United is a done deal.
The former Juventus man is believed to have agreed personal terms with reports indicating he will sign a five-year contract at Manchester United after United upped their initial £52.3million bid for the player.
Morata scored 20 goals and claimed six assists in 43 games for Madrid this season as they claimed the La Liga and Champions League titles.
Madrid-born Morata came through the Real Madrid academy to make his first-team debut in December 2010, before signing for Juventus in the summer of 2014 for £17.5million.
In June 2016, Real Madrid exercised a buy-back clause to bring Morata back from Juventus for £26.2million and the forward has established himself as a key member of Zinedine Zidane’s squad
Morata’s agent Juanma Lopez has confirmed his client was desperate for regular football.
“He doesn’t want to go through another season like that. It was a great season, but he wants to play more,” said Lopez. “Alvaro is a player who wants to play a more important role.
The Spanish paper also claims Chelsea are now the favourites to sign Morata’s Real team-mate James Rodriguez for a fee of around £70million.