Premier League • England

Chelsea reject bid for struggling Boehly signing, with best Blues player to leave instead

Chelsea centre-back Benoit Badiashile

AC Milan have seen a bid for Chelsea centre-back Benoit Badiashile turned down, and reports claim a different Blues defender is the one who’ll make way at season’s end.

Badiashile, 22, cost £32.7m to sign when plucked from Monaco in the last January transfer window. Badiashile arrived with a reputation of being one of France’s most promising central defenders and wasted no time breaking into Chelsea’s starting eleven in the second half of the 2022/23 campaign.

However, injuries have disrupted Badiashile’s time this term, limiting the Frenchman to just three appearances across all competitions.

What’s more, the summer arrival of Axel Disasi as well as Levi Colwill being integrated into the first-team have caused a logjam at centre-half.

The ageless Thiago Silva remains an automatic pick, while Wesley Fofana will fancy his chances of breaking into the team when fully recovered from knee surgery.

As such, competition for places at the heart of defence is fierce, something that has seen Colwill utilised primarily at left-back thus far.

Badiashile got the nod in Chelsea’s last two Premier League matches, though endured a torrid outing in the 4-1 defeat to Newcastle one week ago.

On the back of that display, Serie A giant AC Milan reportedly spied an opportunity.

Indeed, TuttoMercato reported Milan were prepared to offer Badiashile a way out via a loan with an option to a buy. Any such offer would be made with regards to a move in next month’s January window.

Milan and Chelsea have a strong working relationship in the transfer market having overseen a plethora of deals between the pair in recent years.

Tiemoue Bakayoko, Olivier Giroud, Fikayo Tomori, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Christian Pulisic have all joined The Rossoneri from Chelsea.

Now, a fresh update from TuttoMercatoWeb claims Milan have acted on their interest in Badiashile and lodged a loan bid with an option to buy.

However, Chelsea are understood to have rejected the proposal. Explaining why, two reasons were cited.

Firstly, Chelsea reportedly believe it’s far too early to make a final judgement on the Frenchman after less than 20 games for the club.

Secondly, moving Badiashile on would require a replacement signing and The Blues see no need to create a new problem for themselves.

READ MORE: Ranking the Premier League clubs by their transfer net spend in 2023: Chelsea top, Man Utd above Liverpool…

Thiago Silva to leave when season ends?

Instead of Badiashile, veteran Brazilian Thiago Silva may be the one to depart Stamford Bridge in 2024.

The 39-year-old is in the final year of his contract and per Football Insider, Chelsea have decided against offering a new deal.

A return to Brazil with Fluminense has long been speculated, though Silva has gone on record to suggest retirement is an option.

Despite his advancing age, Silva remains a key cog in Chelsea’s defence and his rare off-day against Newcastle was very much the outlier.

Indeed, Silva was named both Chelsea Player of the Year and Chelsea Players’ Player of the Year in the 2022/23 season.

If Silva does move on at the end of the current campaign, retaining Badiashile will make even more sense.

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