Chelsea are one of four clubs being considered as a potential destination for Bayern Munich defender David Alaba, according to reports.
Alaba is in the final year of his contract at Bayern, where he has proven himself as one of the best defenders in Europe. The versatile star helped them win the Champions League last season.
However, his future may lie away from the German giants. In less than a month’s time, Alaba will be able to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with another club ahead of a summer move.
It is unlikely that Alaba will move in January, but it is equally unlikely that he will sign a new contract with Bayern. All signs point towards a free transfer next summer.
Previous reports have suggested that Liverpool and Juventus – league champions in England and Italy respectively – could tussle for Alaba.
Chelsea have also been mentioned as a possible suitor for Alaba, as the London club continue to bolster their squad. After focusing mainly on attacking targets in the summer, they could look for another defensive option.
According to Bild, Alaba’s agent, Pini Zahavi, has identified Chelsea as a possible next club for the Austrian. Alternatively, he could seek a move to Barcelona, Real Madrid or Paris Saint-Germain.
It is understood that Alaba would prefer to move to either Barcelona or Madrid in La Liga. However, neither club may be able to afford his salary.
A further complication for Barcelona is that they do not have a good relationship with Zahavi after his orchestration of Neymar’s move to PSG three years ago. That means they are unlikely to deal with the agent unless Joan Laporta becomes their new president.
Therefore, Bild reckons there is a strong chance that Chelsea win the race for the 28-year-old. The Blues could compete for Alaba’s wage demands.
Chelsea yet to firm up interest
However, at present, the interest seems to be coming from Zahavi rather than the clubs. Chelsea will have to decide for themselves whether they want to make a move for him.
The opportunity to sign a player of Alaba’s pedigree on a free transfer may be too good to neglect, though. Indeed, Chelsea showed they are open to signing free agents by bringing in Thiago Silva in the summer.
The former PSG captain has made a good initial impression, but the club may need a longer-term solution at the back. Eight years Silva’s junior and capable of playing at either left-back or centre-back, Alaba may be an ideal reinforcement.