Premier League • England

Chelsea ‘make contact’ with agent of top Man Utd target for €70m deal that’ll anger Ratcliffe

Chelsea have been tipped to beat Man Utd to Barcelona star Ronald Araujo

Chelsea have been tipped to beat Man Utd to Barcelona star Ronald Araujo

Chelsea have reportedly ‘made contact’ with the agents of a Manchester United centre-back target as they eye a replacement for Thiago Silva.

The 39-year-old is set to leave Stamford Bridge as a free agent at the end of this season and TEAMtalk sources state a move to Fluminense is most likely for him.

Silva signed for Chelsea in 2020 and has made 151 appearances in total for the London side, helping them win three major trophies in the process.

Replacing the veteran will be no easy task but the Blues’ recruitment staff see Barcelona star Ronald Araujo as a solid option.

As previously reported by TEAMtalk, Man Utd have also made contact with the centre-back’s representatives in an attempt to lure him to Old Trafford.

Araujo is a key player for Xavi’s Catalans side but they could be forced to sell him this summer due to their ongoing financial problems.

He is under contract until 2026 and if he doesn’t sign an extension before the end of the current campaign, that would be an indication that he’s on his way out.

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Chelsea ‘in contact’ with Barcelona star over move

According to reports from Spain, as cited by CaughtOffsideChelsea have now ‘established contact’ with Araujo’s intermediaries as they aim to beat Man Utd to his signature.

The 25-year-old is widely considered to be one of the best defenders in LaLiga and has caught the attention of several top sides.

Araujo has made 34 appearances for Barcelona this season, scoring one goal and helping his team to keep 10 clean sheets in the process.

He has also captained the team on multiple occassions this term, showing his leadership qualities and importance to his side.

Bringing in a natural leader like Araujo to replace Silva would be a smart move from Chelsea. The Uruguay international can also play as a right-back, so could provide cover in two positions.

Reports suggest that Barcelona will demand around €70m (£59.9m) for Araujo this summer and it remains to be seen whether the Blues are willing to go that high with there offer.

Man Utd may now be forced to switch their attention to other targets if Chelsea win the race, and TEAMtalk understands that Everton star Jarrad Branthwaite is still on Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s radar.

The Red Devils are also keen on Juventus’ Gleison Bremer and Nice’s Jean-Clair Todibo, so they are three names for fans to keep an eye out for.

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