Fabrizio Romano has confirmed a former Chelsea regular is primed to leave the club this summer, and a second reliable source has revealed the Blues are eyeing an imperious Man Utd target as a stellar upgrade.
There have been very few bright sparks in what has been a season of doom and gloom at Stamford Bridge. Among the few positives has been goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga who has relegated Edouard Mendy to a distant second choice.
However, the Mirror recently reported incoming manager Mauricio Pochettino is ‘unconvinced’ by both goalkeepers. As such, one or both will be included in what’s expected to be a mass exodus of players to help balance the books.
Now, according to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, the stopper likeliest to be axed is Mendy.
Romano tweeted the 31-year-old – who was the preferred option of Thomas Tuchel and Frank Lampard during his first stint in charge – “could leave Chelsea” at season’s end.
A “good proposal” for both the club and player will be required before a deal is made. In other words, Chelsea will hope to recoup much of the £22m they paid Rennes and Mendy will have to give the okay to whichever club bids.
Romano claimed the new manager will make the final decision on the goalkeeping situation, though if the Mirror’s report is accurate, Pochettino isn’t all that keen on Mendy anyway.
The trusted journalist also noted Mendy has recently changed agent to Fali Ramadani of the Lian Sports Agency. Changing agents is often an early indicator a player is gearing up for a move.
Chelsea eyeing Man Utd target
On the subject of who could take Mendy’s place at Chelsea and potentially supplant Kepa as the starter, one name from Italy is coming to the fore.
Sky Italia’s ultra-reliable Gianluca Di Marzio recently confirmed Chelsea are sizing up Inter Milan’s Andre Onana.
The 27-year-old has been in irresistible form for Inter this term, particularly in the Champions League.
Indeed, Onana leads this year’s competition with seven clean sheets (two more than anyone else). He also tops the goals prevented category with a mark of 6.1. For context, Real Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois is second with 5.5 goals prevented.
When asked who English sides would be scouting in Inter’s semi-final first leg clash with AC Milan on Wednesday night, Di Marzio stated: “Two players, Onana, the Inter goalkeeper. Chelsea and Man Utd too like Onana.
“I don’t know if they’ll make an offer in the next weeks, it’s [still] early. But Inter knows Onana is in the lists of Chelsea and Manchester United.
“Inter will ask for €50m (approx. £44m) minimum for him. And congratulations to Inter because they got him out of contract from Ajax [as a free agent].”
The other player Di Marzio referenced was Nicolo Barella who is being courted by Liverpool.
However, Onana will be of greater interest to Chelsea and given his sparkling form this season, would represent a sizeable upgrade on anything the Blues can field between the sticks at present.