Chelsea buckle to breathe new life into Arsenal, West Ham pursuits

Andreas Christensen, Tammy Abraham and Tio Werner, Chelsea, 2021

Chelsea have softened their stance over an exit-linked star that could give Arsenal, West Ham and Aston Villa the encouragement they need to strike, per a report.

The Blues have been heavily linked with acquiring an elite level striker to complete Thomas Tuchel’s jigsaw. The German already guided Chelsea to Champions League glory last season, though hopes of overhauling Man City in the Premier League may rest on sharpening their forward line.

Strikers Tammy Abraham and Timo Werner joint-top scored across all competitions last season. However, the total they managed was just 12 strikes.

Superstars ranging from Erling Haaland to Romelu Lukaku and Robert Lewandowski have all been touted, though each potential deal is fraught with difficulties.

Nevertheless, Chelsea rarely stand idly by in the market. And the latest news suggests they will double down in their desire to land a major name.

That’s because the Sun report that Chelsea are prepared to ‘slash’ their transfer demands over Tammy Abraham.

The 23-year-old has been linked with Arsenal, Villa and West Ham, but his £40m valuation has put the trio off.

Tammy Abraham Chelsea warm-up

As such, Chelsea are so ‘keen’ to shift Abraham that they are now willing to chop ‘at least £5m’ off his valuation.

David Moyes is understood to be in desperate need of a striker with a tricky Europa League campaign to juggle. Michail Antonio will be difficult to dislodge, though his struggles with persistent hamstring injuries are well documented.

Chelsea to swap Zouma with Kounde?

Chelsea to swap Zouma with Kounde?

Chelsea have reportedly made an offer of £25m plus Kurt Zouma for Sevilla's 22-year-old central defender Jules Kounde.

Arsenal and Villa have both been touted as potential suitors, and only time will tell whether Chelsea’s softened stance prompts a suitor to act.

Olivier Giroud has already left for AC Milan. And should Abraham follow the Frenchman out of the door, signing a new Blues striker could become a necessity.

Steve Bruce’s most iconic moments for Man Utd, Hull City and Aston Villa

West Ham, Chelsea talks could disrupt Kounde deal

Meanwhile, reports on Thursday claim West Ham have opened talks with Chelsea over signing defender Kurt Zouma.

Sky Sports are reporting that the Hammers and Blues have begun discussions over a possible transfer.

David Moyes is known to be in the market for a new central defender as Fabian Balbuena has left to join Dynamo Moscow and many players have been linked.

Now, Sky’s Kaveh Solhekol took to Twitter to air his thoughts. He revealed: “West Ham in talks to sign Kurt Zouma from Chelsea. Willing to pay £20m. Will cost more.”

It emerged earlier this week that Chelsea are targeting Sevilla centre-back Jules Kounde. And it seems as though Thomas Tuchel is prepared to use Zouma as a makeweight in the deal.

As such, West Ham’s approach would appear likely to meet resistance until the future of Kounde is determined.

READ MORE: Granovskaia plots Chelsea swap deal with Timo Werner used as sweetener