Chelsea winger Christian Pulisic has dug his heels in over joining AC Milan despite the fact a move to Lyon would be far more beneficial for the Blues, per a top source.
The USA international, 24, was a £58m signing back in 2019 when plucked from Borussia Dortmund. Pulisic was viewed as the heir apparent to Eden Hazard, though injuries, patchy form and the chopping and changing of managers have ensured his Blues career never truly caught fire.
With just 12 months remaining on his current deal, a summer exit is now on the cards. To that end, the Athletic’s David Ornstein brought news of competing offers from AC Milan and Lyon on Sunday night.
Indeed, Milan were first to inundate Chelsea with a bid after striking an agreement on personal terms with Pulisic first.
Ornstein reported Milan verbally offered €14m (approx. £12m), though Chelsea value the player far higher.
Much to Chelsea’s relief, an official bid soon arrived from French side Lyon. They offered to pay €25m (approx. £21.5m), while also agreeing to include what was described as a ‘meaningful’ sell-on clause. Per Ornstein, Lyon’s bid was deemed ‘acceptable’ by Chelsea.
Clearly, if choosing between the two, Todd Boehly, Mauricio Pochettino and co. would go with Lyon.
The Blues have already shifted much of their deadwood this summer to help balance the books. However, with a new goalkeeper, Moises Caicedo, and potentially another centre-forward after Nicolas Jackson wanted too, Chelsea will have their eyes on recouping as much as they can for those still to depart.
However, according to Fabrizio Romano, Pulisic is putting Chelsea in a difficult position.
Pulisic wants Milan and Milan only
The transfer guru tweeted Pulisic is refusing to change his stance of favouring a move to Milan.
Joining Stefano Pioli’s side is labelled his “priority”, and the winger has made it crystal clear to Chelsea where he wants to go.
Romano concluded the Blues are now back in discussions with Milan with the aim of thrashing out an agreement over the transfer fee.
Given Milan’s verbal offer was a hefty £8.5m below Lyon’s, £46m below the price paid to Dortmund, and also didn’t contain a sell-on clause, Chelsea’s negotiating team have their work cut out.
While Pulisic’s reasoning for favouring Milan wasn’t stated, one obvious factor is they’ll be in next season’s Champions League.
Lyon, meanwhile, finished seventh in Ligue 1 and as such, aren’t in Europe whatsoever next year.