Chelsea ‘held talks’ with Liverpool target but failed to complete move

Karim Adeyemi Chelsea

Chelsea were interested in signing a top Liverpool target three years ago but failed to get a deal over the line, according to a report.

The Blues have bolstered their forward line with a number of impressive transfers in recent seasons. During Frank Lampard’s reign at Stamford Bridge, they brought in the likes of Timo Werner, Kai Havertz and Hakim Ziyech.

Thomas Tuchel has looked to make the team his own since taking charge in late January. Belgian goalscorer Romelu Lukaku returned to Chelsea for £97.5million, while midfielder Saul Niguez joined on an initial loan deal.

However, Chelsea’s squad could have looked slightly different if they managed to sign a German starlet.

The west London side attempted to land Red Bull Salzburg wonderkid Karim Adeyemi in 2018.

The centre-forward was playing for German side SpVgg Unterhaching at the time, and earned a switch to Salzburg later that year.

Unterhaching chairman Manfred Schwabl said (via Express): “In 2018 we received an inquiry from a scout from Chelsea. He had a contract with us at the time.

“My contact with Karim’s family was very close. I then said that it would be a great story if we could look at it together on site. Then his dad, my daughter, Karim and I flew over and we went to see it at Chelsea.

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“But for us and the parents it was always clear that this step to the island [England] at the age of 16 is still too big. Chelsea wanted him to join the academy, but we said we wanted Karim under our own wing.”

Adeyemi has since announced himself on the world stage and captured the attention of Liverpool. He scored on his international debut for Germany during a recent 6-0 win against Armenia.

Jurgen Klopp’s side are thought to be preparing a big-money offer ahead of next summer.

Tuchel takes responsibility for debut

Tuchel has taken the blame after new arrival Saul struggled in the 3-0 victory over Aston Villa.

On paper, Chelsea dominated with two goals from Lukaku and one from Mateo Kovacic.

But Villa had the better first half and perhaps should have capitalised on some of their chances.

Saul appeared out of his depth on his first start, and Tuchel has admitted responsibility.

He told Sky Sports: “It was hard to do, but I had the feeling that he struggled. He had some big mistakes, passing mistakes and errors. He struggled with the intensity.

“You could see that he’s not fully adapted, I think this is completely my responsibility, I thought he could just jump in and play for us on this level.

“I thought it was better to have Jorginho, who has a close connection with Thiago [Silva] to control the game a bit more there.”

READ MORE: Lukaku sends message to Ronaldo with brilliant Chelsea debut as Villa swept aside