Chelsea’s search for a new defender could well take them towards a move for Inter Milan star Milan Skriniar, claims a report.
Chelsea chief Todd Boehly has started to get the ball rolling on a number of potential deals and even explored a move for Cristiano Ronaldo. While Raheem Sterling is in his sights he is also well aware of Thomas Tuchel’s need to bolster a depleted back line.
Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen have both left and Chelsea need some replacements.
Holland star Matthijs de Ligt is on their wanted list, but they have been unable to get close to a deal for the player.
According to Sky Sport Italia, an offer of €40m, plus Timo Werner has been submitted by Chelsea.
But Juventus have told Chelsea to pay €70m and include Werner as part of the deal for De Ligt, whose release clause is set at €120m.
Now Calciomercato.com report that Chelsea have switched their focus and are keen to compete with PSG for Skriniar.
The asking price for the 27-year-old Slovakia captain is around the €70m. PSG have reportedly made a bid of €60m including bonuses.
Inter director Beppe Marotta has made it clear there is plenty of “interest” in Skriniar and the Serie A club are open to a sale.
“There is interest from many clubs, both for Skriniar and for other players,” said Marotta, via FootballItalia.
“We will evaluate it calmly. We don’t want to let go of anyone unless they request to be sold, but sustainability must always be kept in consideration too.”
Inter are apparently not interested in a player exchange deal and are looking for a straight cash transaction.
Boehly switches targets
Chelsea had been expected to push through a deal for Jules Kounde after missing out on the defender in the last three transfer windows.
Marina Granovskaia had led negotiations with the Sevilla defender last summer and personal terms were believed to have been agreed. However, Sevilla moved the goal posts on the asking price and a transfer fell through.
Kounde was understood to remain on Chelsea’s wanted list, but The Telegraph now report Kounde “is no longer the top target in that position”.
The departure of Granovskaia has left Boehly in charge of negotiating transfers. And the American has also lost the support he may have had from technical advisor Petr Cech, who has decided to move on.
It may well be that Boehly has decided to move on from Kounde with De Ligt and now Skriniar preferred targets.