Premier League • England

Worrying report claims Chelsea have thrown the towel in with star’s next club named

Hakim Ziyech, Kepa Arrizabalaga and Andreas Christensen

Chelsea have ‘already given up’ hope of tying Andreas Christensen down to a new contract, and the Dane’s likeliest next move has been revealed, per a report.

The centre-half, 25, is one of three noteable free agents in Chelsea’s defence this year. Antonio Rudiger and Cesar Azpilicueta are also out of contract in the summer, and all three are being heavily linked with moves to the continent.

In Christensen’s case, links with Barcelona and Bayern Munich have been the strongest.

Barcelona have mainly signed free agents and unsettled stars facing uncertain futures with their current employer in recent times. Their financial strife has necessitated such a shift in their transfer thinking.

Christensen would fit the first of those pre-requisites, while Bayern are searching for a replacement for Niklas Sule. The German has agreed to join Borussia Dortmund on a free in the summer.

Now, Sport Witness (citing Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo), have shed new light on Christensen’s status at Chelsea.

Chelsea hopes fading

They claim the Blues have ‘already given up’ hope of retaining Christensen beyond the current campaign. What’s more, they believe Barcelona is his next destination.

A move to the Camp Nou is reportedly ‘increasing’ in its likelihood. That is also the stance in Germany from newspaper Bild.

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Bayern are reported to be fully aware Barcelona have ‘taken the lead’ in the Christensen race. Talks between the player and Barcelona are said to have ‘intensified’ lately, with Christensen favouring a move to Spain rather than Germany.

Per the Telegraph, Chelsea twice believed they were on the cusp of a new deal with Christensen earlier this season. That led to Thomas Tuchel issuing a contract ultimatum, but a Chelsea deal still went unsigned.

Barcelona could make it a double with their acquisition of Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta also sounding advanced.

Rudiger, meanwhile, has been linked with PSG and Real Madrid. But in a more concerning update, Man Utd were the latest to size up the imposing German.

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“Things can still be done” – Christensen

Meanwhile, the Dane was keen to stress his future is not decided just yet after outlining the one thing he wants in football.

He said (via the Mirror): “Things can still be done. Being part of a winning team is all that I want to be as a football player.

“It’s hard because all the talks between the club and my guys, I try to keep it away because I want to focus and it’s not changed for me.

“I go on the pitch every day not really thinking about it – I leave that to the club and my guys, and I can focus on playing football.

“I just focus on winning, really. It’s a difficult situation.”

Christensen went on to explain how and why his game has come on leaps and bounds in recent seasons.

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