Chelsea transfer target to snub Barcelona, Real Madrid in favour of Stamford Bridge move
Chelsea transfer target Jules Kounde ‘intends’ to join the Blues and will reject offers from Barcelona and Real Madrid this summer, according to a report.
The centre-back has been linked with Thomas Tuchel’s side for some time now. He is viewed as an ideal signing should one of Antonio Rudiger, Andreas Christensen or Cesar Azpilicueta leave at the end of the season.
Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia is reportedly willing to spend big money on 23-year-old Kounde. They have made contact with his current club, Sevilla, but are yet to finalise a deal.
The recent Club World Cup winners are preparing an offer worth €55million (£45.7m). This is unlikely to be accepted as Sevilla want Kounde’s full release clause, which sits at £68.5m.
The Daily Express, who cite Italian outlet Tuttomercatoweb, provide an update on Kounde’s future and Chelsea’s chances of signing him.
They claim the seven-cap France international holds the ‘intention’ of moving to Stamford Bridge once the transfer window reopens.
He will reject advances from Barcelona and Real Madrid in favour of playing under Tuchel in west London.
Granovskaia contacts Jules Kounde agent
According to the report, Barca made an approach to Sevilla and Kounde towards the end of January. Granovskaia soon found out about this and informed the player’s agent of Chelsea’s interest.
He is now gearing up for a maiden campaign in the Premier League, although Chelsea will have to strike a deal with Sevilla first.
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Kounde has been integral for the Spanish outfit this term, featuring in 28 matches in all competitions. He is helping Julen Lopetegui’s team to hunt Real Madrid in the La Liga title race.
Kounde is not the only Sevilla player on the radar of English clubs as regular centre-back partner Diego Carlos is a target for Newcastle.
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Tuchel reacts to narrow Chelsea win
Meanwhile, Tuchel says Chelsea ‘needed a bit of luck’ after they edged past Crystal Palace 1-0 at Selhurst Park.
The Champions League holders were left frustrated for large portions of the match and failed to use striker Romelu Lukaku.
Hakim Ziyech had a goal disallowed in the 76th minute, but his first-time volley 13 minutes later stood and gave Chelsea the spoils.
“It was not the time to over expect something from us,” Tuchel told Sky Sports. “We came from where we came, played 120 minutes in the FA Cup, 120 minutes in the Club World Cup in 30C temperature difference, we had jet lag against a good opponent, a tough team to play.
“We managed to win, keep a clean sheet. Well deserved and could have scored in the first half,” the manager added. “If you score late it is always lucky, nobody ever denies that but you need a bit of luck to win games. If you win them, there is not a need to think too long about it.
“They are a strong side at home, have confidence and are well rested. That is how it is.”
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