A pair of Chelsea moves for Sevilla’s Jules Kounde and Leeds Utd ace Raphinha have been thrown into doubt amid the club’s looming sale, per a trusted source.
That’s according to the Sun (citing transfer guru Fabrizio Romano), who claim Roman Abramovich’s impending sale has left Chelsea’s transfer plans in the mire.
The Blues owner has decided to sell after 19 years at the helm. The latest on who could take over at Stamford Bridge can be found here.
But regardless of who takes over, the club’s transfer plans may have already been torpedoed.
Romano said on the Here We Go podcast: “Chelsea were working before Abramovich put the club up for sale on Jules Kounde.
“He is still top of the list but now what is next? Who will be the new owner and what budget will they have?
“Marina Granovskaia and Petr Cech, will they stay or not? There are many questions around Chelsea now and this is why they are unable to complete agreements.”
Kounde has long been on the Blues’ radar and it had been widely reported they could go back in for the Frenchman in the summer.
What’s more, with Andreas Christensen close to joining Barcelona and the futures of Cesar Azpilicueta and Antonio Rudiger up in the air, centre-back additions could quickly become a priority.
Even survival won’t keep Raphinha at Leeds
Regarding Leeds winger Raphinha, Romano said: “The other one from Leeds – they are not negotiating with the player because in case of relegation there could be clauses in Raphinha’s contract which change his price.
“But keep an eye on these two players.”
Jorginho could leave Chelsea this summer because of sale of the club
Jorginho isn’t 100% committed to Chelsea as the sale of the club means that return to Italy could be on the cards
Raphinha is being tipped to leave Yorkshire at season’s end – irrespective of whether Leeds stay up.
Indeed, recent reports have stated that the Brazilian has twice rejected Leeds’ attempts to extend his stay. His current contract expires in 2024.
Leeds can expect to fetch around £60m for the player’s signature come the end of the season. However, Italian journalist Gianluigi Longari reported last month that he can leave Leeds for just £20m in the event of relegation.
That will no doubt spark a mad scramble to land the impressive 25-year-old. But whether Chelsea will still be a contender in the race, only time will tell.
Rudiger gets another Prem suitor
Meanwhile, Newcastle United are prepared to enter an ambitious fight for Chelsea contract rebel Antonio Rudiger, according to a report.
Rudiger, 29, has put powerhouses across Europe on alert this season with his refusal to renew his Blues contract. Real Madrid and PSG have each been heavily linked with the Germany international.
And a shock switch in the Premier League is a potential too. Tottenham were the first English side to emerge as an interested party last year. Since then Manchester United are said to have been keeping a close eye on his situation. The free availability of a centre-back of Rudiger’s class is hard to ignore.
Ultimately, he wants to be earning a wage which he feels reflects his value. As the richest football club in the world, the Magpies should have no issue there.
Therefore, The Telegraph claim they will enter the race to sign him should he opt to leave Stamford Bridge at the end of the season. It is noted, though, that the club’s Saudi-backed hierarchy are unlikely to ‘smash their wage structure’ for players on more than £200k-per-week.
Previous reports have put Rudiger’s wage demands at slightly above that mark. So they’d have to reach a compromise. They also wouldn’t be able to offer him Champions League football like many others in the battle can.