Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel says he has no idea about his summer transfer budget as Manchester City announced they had agreed a deal with Borussia Dortmund for Erling Haaland.
Haaland was a target for Chelsea and the Blues are understood to have made attempts to sign the Norway striker last summer. But Chelsea were effectively priced out of a move for the 21-year-old.
According to BILD, his agent Mino Raiola, who recently passed away, was demanding an agents’ fee of £34m. He also wanted £820,000-a-week as wages for Haaland, so Chelsea stepped away from the deal.
Now though City have agreed a deal of £51.1m – the striker’s release clause. And, according to Sky Sports the total deal, including agents’ fees and the signing-on fee, is around £85.5m.
Asked if Tuchel had any advice for Haaland in the Premier League, he said: “No advice. First of all, it’s not sure. No? And second of all, if he does not play for us I will not give any advice.”
Tuchel was also asked how important is was to get clarity moving forward ahead of the summer transfer window.
But the German boss made it clear that there were other things on the agenda before he could think about summer recruitment.
“In the moment not. It’s a positive sign and it feels like it will come to an end and give us possibilities to act but at this very moment it is not like this,” said Tuchel.
The Blues boss also said he had no idea what budget he will have to spend in the summer and does not have a meeting planned with Todd Boehly.
“Absolutely not. Maybe if I had (information on money for the summer) I would not tell you! But I do not have so I don’t need to lie,” said Tuchel.
The Blues boss has yet to meet Boehly, who looks set to be Chelsea’s controlling owner. The US magnate’s consortium is poised to complete the £4.25bn Stamford Bridge club purchase, according to the PA news agency.
Eldridge Industries founder and Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Boehly will hold the most influence in the consortium that will buy the club from Roman Abramovich.
Tuchel says he has had other concerns after Chelsea conceded a late equaliser in the 2-2 draw with Wolves.
“After the end of the match [against Wolves] with a late goal – an equaliser – we had other things to talk and think about, unfortunately.
“Nothing has changed for us at Cobham, we are still waiting for the confirmation, for things to progress, to hopefully have news for you and for us, for the team, to inject some positive energy.
“We are the only club at the moment that suffers like this – may be the first club that ever suffered this. It is a situation that is unique and a situation that is quite challenging.
“Of course, everybody hopes for the situation to be clarified. These are steps in the right direction. We are waiting for it for a long time. We need positive energy and a competitive atmosphere at the club. It is very important for things to progress.”
Tuchel also admitted the ongoing takeover talk has been a “distraction” for his players, whose form has suffered.
Tuchel laments ‘distraction’
Chelsea have won just one of their last five games.
“It has for sure. There’s no sense in hiding from the fact that it is a distraction,” added Tuchel. “It is a matter of to which level we can reach even if we are distracted or worried or disadvantaged by it.
“We did excellently until the international break, it had no effect in terms of results. It had almost the opposite effect. We felt strong during the difficulties and the announcement, the sanctions in place.
“Maybe something also very human and normal took place, in the moment of two weeks off or one week off with the players not here, there were different influences to them and maybe more thoughts to the situation in general. The situation is now very, very long and the players also want to feel competitive and know what’s going on next season.
“A player, a guy like Toni (Antonio Rudiger) decided to change the club. With every day it gets a bit more difficult, not impossible. We are still looking to reach the level and be competitive, win games. It is no excuse but for sure is a reason.”