Premier League • England

Chelsea consider re-opening talks for dynamic wing-back target despite refusing €50m valuation

Inter Milan star Denzel Dumfries

Chelsea have been tipped to revisit their interest in Inter Milan full-back, Denzel Dumfries, within the next couple of weeks, per reports in Italy.

The Blues have been looking at strengthening their wing-back areas this summer. Last season, injuries to Reece James and Ben Chilwell exposed a lack of depth in those territories. Chelsea have since brought in a reinforcement on the left, Marc Cucurella.

But they are yet to bolster the right-hand side of their defence. A contract renewal for Cesar Azpilicueta was good news, but he will mainly occupy a space in the back three, rather than on the flank.

Therefore, Chelsea have been looking into the potential signing of Netherlands international, Denzel Dumfries. He is just embarking on his second season with Inter, where he replaced another former Blues target, Achraf Hakimi.

During his debut season in Italy, Dumfries contributed five goals and seven assists from 45 appearances in all competitions. He hit the ground running in 2022-23 by scoring a stoppage-time winner in Inter’s season opener against Lecce.

But it remains to be seen where Dumfries will be spending the rest of the 2022-23 season. His contract with Inter means he should be there until 2025, but Chelsea could come back in for him.

According to La Gazzetta Dello Sport, Chelsea did not want to meet Inter’s asking price for Dumfries when pursuing him earlier this summer. A transfer would have cost them between €45million (£37.9million) and €50million (£42.1million).

Whether those demands remain in place is unclear. However, the Milan-based newspaper has written that Chelsea could re-open talks with Inter in the final two weeks of the transfer window.

Denzel Dumfries could replenish Chelsea ranks amid Inter succession plan

They predict that the imminent departure of Marcos Alonso to Barcelona could be a catalyst for the talks. That is despite Alonso playing on the other side of defence to Dumfries, and his exit being a direct consequence of Cucurella reinforcing that role anyway.

Perhaps Chelsea just need to stock up in the overall full-back roles. Alonso’s exit does not seem to make too much difference, really. They still need further competition for James on the right, regardless.

It could come in the shape of Dumfries. Inter would not want to lose him after just one season, but may have to consider their options financially.

They have ex-Manchester United full-back, Matteo Darmian, in their squad to feature at right-back alternatively if required. They have also brought in young prospect, Raoul Bellanova, from Cagliari, so could feasibly get by without the Dutchman despite his talent.

That could yet play into Chelsea’s hands, prompting an exciting final fortnight of the transfer window.

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