Chelsea eye Atletico raid to transform defence but deal faces key hurdle

Date published: Thursday 23rd July 2020 3:43

Jose Gimenez, Saul Niguez

Chelsea are considering a move to sign Atletico Madrid centre-back Jose Gimenez as they look to bring an end to their defensive frailties, according to a report.

The Blues had conceded 49 Premier League goals before Wednesday’s clash with Liverpool, the worst record in the top 10.

However, that number alarmingly rose to 54 at Anfield as the Reds triumphed in an eight-goal thriller.

Antonio Rudiger endured a particularly tough night, often failing to keep up with Egyptian winger Mohamed Salah.

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has focused on attacking signings so far, bringing in Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner. Indeed, reports claim he is after another attack-minded star in midfielder Kai Havertz.

However, the Daily Telegraph says the Blues have scouted Gimenez as a potential defensive signing to ease their concerns at the back.

The Uruguay international, 25, only played 26 times this season after a string of injuries halted his progress.

However, he is otherwise a regular under Diego Simeone, having joined up with the Argentine boss in 2013.

 

 

While Chelsea have earmarked Gimenez as a potential signing, however, the newspaper adds that the club will need to offload at least one of his current centre-backs if they are to press ahead with a deal.

Rudiger is the Blues’ most trusted defender and is unlikely to leave. Fikayo Tomori, meanwhile, impressed earlier in the season and looks a real prospect for the future.

However, Andreas Christensen’s future remains unclear, with the Dane’s contract expiring in the summer of 2022.

RICE ANOTHER OPTION FOR CHELSEA?

Declan Rice West Ham TEAMtalk

Lampard is also reportedly keen on West Ham star Declan Rice. The pair worked together while Rice was in Chelsea’s academy.

However, the Daily Telegraph claims their place in next season’s Premier League – secured with a point against Manchester United on Wednesday – puts them in a strong negotiating position.

Lampard was pressed on his reported admiration for Rice earlier this month. However, he refused to go into detail on the situation.

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