Premier League • England

Chelsea transfer far from done as Liverpool mobilise to hijack signing and leave Todd Boehly furious

Josko Gvardiol and Christopher Nkunku

There is no guarantee Chelsea will end up signing Christopher Nkunku from RB Leipzig as Liverpool remain firmly in the race for him, according to one journalist.

Nkunku was in brilliant form for Leipzig last season, registering 35 goals and 20 assists from attacking midfield. This helped him win the Bundesliga Player of the Season award ahead of former Bayern Munich talisman Robert Lewandowski.

Nkunku is looking to make it another highly successful campaign. And he has already found the net six times in 11 outings, as well as chipping in with an assist.

The 24-year-old is back at Leipzig now after representing France during the international break. He featured in the Nations League matches against Austria and Denmark, though he wasn’t selected in the starting eleven either time.

Nkunku was tipped to make a Premier League move before the start of the recent summer transfer window. However, he ended the speculation in June by signing a new contract with Leipzig. It runs until the end of the 2025/26 campaign.

Leipzig were hoping the fresh terms would see Nkunku remain at the Red Bull Arena for the next few years. Sadly for them, that doesn’t seem to be the case.

According to German newspaper Bild, the attacker has already had a medical ahead of a proposed move to Chelsea.

This has been confirmed by several sources, including Fabrizio Romano. He claims Chelsea have sent Nkunku a long-term contract ahead of potentially landing him in summer 2023.

Chelsea take lead in Christopher Nkunku race

The Blues are in discussions with Leipzig over the transfer fee. Nkunku’s release clause stands at £53million (€60m), though Chelsea may opt to sign him through a different deal structure.

Chelsea, now led by American businessman Todd Boehly and manager Graham Potter, are clearly in pole position for the player.

However, his switch to Stamford Bridge is not a foregone conclusion. RMC Sport journalist Fabrice Hawkins provides his information on the talks and claims Chelsea have ‘an agreement in principle’ with Nkunku.

Despite this, Liverpool remain a serious threat. They also hope to capture him and believe this can still be done, even though they are lagging behind their Prem rivals right now.

Liverpool are ‘far from giving up’ on the pursuit, which sets up a possible transfer battle between the two clubs.

Leipzig are unlikely to get more than his release clause. Ultimately, the decision will rest with Nkunku.

He will probably receive contract offers from Liverpool and Chelsea. He will analyse these, while also speaking to Potter and Reds boss Jurgen Klopp.

Nkunku will look at how much money he will earn per week, how much game time he will get and the ability of the clubs to fight for trophies.

It is a hard decision as both teams have won big trophies in recent years. Chelsea lifted the Champions League in 2021, something Liverpool managed two years before that.

Star can choose between Chelsea and Liverpool

It is a great choice for Nkunku to have. Frustratingly though, both of his potential suitors are not at their strongest right now.

Chelsea are in a period of transition as Potter looks to change his squad, which is based on the wishes of predecessor Thomas Tuchel.

Liverpool, meanwhile, have had a slow start to the season. They are already eight points behind Manchester City, whom they challenged for the league title last season.

Perhaps Klopp’s players are suffering from burnout after the physical and mental demands of last term. But Klopp needs to rectify this, to ensure more trophies arrive at Anfield and to help the club’s pursuit of top stars such as Nkunku.

Boehly would be left angry if Liverpool beat Chelsea to the Frenchman’s signature. Boehly’s aim is to bring more big names to west London and take Chelsea back to the summit of European football.

But Liverpool are now posing a serious threat for Nkunku, with the transfer race hotting up.

Meanwhile, Paul Merson has given his opinion on the state of Liverpool’s title chances and talked about two big games for Klopp.