Trouble could be on the horizon at Chelsea after it was revealed club chiefs aren’t convinced by a £150m duo Frank Lampard ‘definitely wants’.
The Blues have been the Premier League’s biggest spenders in the summer window thus far.
Creative force Hakim Ziyech and German hotshot Timo Werner have both arrived. While a move for Bayer Leverkusen playmaker Kai Havertz remains very much on the cards.
Frank Lampard’s influence could be a decisive factor in that deal’s progression, but that may be where the Chelsea boss’ sway stops.
According to The Athletic’s David Ornstein, Chelsea remain unconvinced over a defensive pair rated highly by Lampard.
With Marcos Alonso and Emerson Palmieri up for sale, Chilwell has been identified as the club’s long-term answer at left-back.
Rice, meanwhile, is seen as the solution to their centre-back woes, but the duo will not be available on the cheap.
Fees of around £70m have been rumoured for both, and Ornstein revealed differences within the club over the pair.
“We know of their interest in Ben Chilwell of Leicester. I don’t think everybody is convinced at Chelsea about the fee that it will take to prise him out of Leicester’s hands, maybe around £50m.
“Frank Lampard definitely wants to sign him and I do think Chelsea are ahead of Manchester City in the pecking order.
“City are also interested but they’re still involved in Champions League football. They, like Chelsea, would have to move on one or more left-backs to free up the space and potentially the finance too.
“That’s going to be a really interesting one and both clubs have other options too.”
Rice also a potential issue
Ornstein continued: “In central defence, we know that Lampard is very fond of Declan Rice at West Ham and would like to convert him from a midfielder into a top centre-back.
“I know people in football who think he can become world class in that position.
“West Ham will demand an incredibly high fee, sources have suggested in the region of £65m to £70m, they don’t need to sell and they’re in a strong position contractually.
“I don’t think everybody at Chelsea is convinced by Declan Rice but it’s definitely one that Lampard wants.”