Chelsea have received a huge blow in their pursuit of Lyon attacker Rayan Cherki, who looks set to remain in France for at least another season.
Mauricio Pochettino has already brought in nine new players, including big-money signings such as Moises Caicedo (£115m) and Romeo Lavia (£58m).
Chelsea’s transfer business isn’t done yet, though. It’s thought Pochettino is looking to bring in another attacking player as he looks to help his side bounce back from a dismal 2022/23 season.
As reported by TEAMtalk, Cherki is thought to be at the top of the manager’s transfer shortlist.
The 19-year-old was in fine form for Lyon last season and caught the attention of several top European clubs. He made 34 Ligue 1 appearances, scoring four goals and making six assists in the process.
Interestingly, Newcastle have also considered making a move for Cherki, but they too are set to miss out on signing him.
According to French outlet L’Equipe, Cherki is set to stay at Lyon for at least one more season. As a result, Pochettino will have to switch his attention elsewhere for a new attacking addition.
Chelsea could push for Johnson after Cherki blow
With Cherki no longer an option for Chelsea, they may now make a move for Nottingham Forest star Brennan Johnson.
Both Chelsea and Tottenham are thought to be big admirers of the Wales international, who enjoyed a fantastic first season in the Premier League last term.
Johnson has scored eight goals and made three assists in the Premier League so far and has been linked with a host of top clubs.
Steve Cooper is understandably desperate to keep hold of the 22-year-old for this season, but Nottingham Forest could be forced into accepting a sizeable bid for his services.
Recent reports suggest that Tottenham are leading the race for the attacker, who is valued at approximately £40m by the Tricky Trees.
With Chelsea missing out on Cherki, however, they may now intensify their pursuit of Johnson as an alternative.
They will have to move quickly to get a deal done, though, with the transfer window drawing to a close. The closer we get to deadline day, the less likely it becomes that Forest would be willing to sell their star man.
With that in mind, it will be interesting to see if Chelsea make an opening bid for Johnson in the next few days.