Chelsea never entered ‘advanced’ negotiations to sign Rayan Cherki from Lyon this summer, according to Fabrizio Romano – though the Blues may end up submitting a bid for him in the future.
Cherki is a 20-year-old attacking midfielder who can also operate as a winger on either flank. He is one of the latest graduates from the Lyon academy, a setup which has previously produced well-known players such as Karim Benzema, Alexandre Lacazette, Nabil Fekir and Corentin Tolisso.
Cherki is aiming to follow in the footsteps of those players by making a big impact in the French top flight. So far, he has made 106 appearances for Lyon in all competitions, registering 14 goals and 16 assists in that time.
Cherki has put in some exciting displays for Lyon, despite his tender age. And this has put several Premier League sides on alert.
Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United were all linked with moves for the playmaker during the summer.
At one stage, Newcastle were tipped to ruin Chelsea’s chances of snaring Cherki by launching a ‘major attack’ for him.
That Newcastle bid never materialised, but Chelsea were still unable to capture Cherki. On August 27, French newspaper L’Equipe revealed he would not be going anywhere this year as Lyon remained intent on keeping him.
Writing on Twitter, Romano has now provided his information on Cherki. The transfer guru states that Chelsea ‘were never in advanced or concrete talks’ to sign Cherki, even though several reports claimed that to be the case.
Romano adds that there were two other English sides who were actively pushing to complete a deal, but Lyon ‘said no’.
Interestingly, Romano does not officially end Chelsea’s pursuit of Cherki. He reveals the Blues are ‘tracking’ him as a ‘top talent’ for the future. Therefore, if Cherki enjoys a brilliant season in 2023-24, then Chelsea may be tempted to firm up their interest in him and finally submit an offer.