Chelsea told top qualities major target will bring as club given warning
Chelsea have been told that one of their prime targets for the summer is among the “best in Europe”, but his current club have been warned that he will be “irreplaceable”.
After winning the Champions League, Chelsea are looking to build for a stronger season in the Premier League. Thomas Tuchel will be hoping to carry on the good impact he has made since becoming head coach in January. But to sustain a title challenge, more signings will be required.
Chelsea spent heavily last summer, signing the likes of Timo Werner, Kai Havertz and Hakim Ziyech. Not all of those signings have worked out and they are now ready to splash the cash again.
Erling Haaland is their top target to provide an upgrade on the misfiring Werner up front. But another area they are looking to strengthen is at wing-back.
Cesar Azpilicueta looks more likely to be used as a right-sided centre-back in Tuchel’s back three. Therefore, more competition is needed for Reece James – who has also been tried in the deeper role.
The main man they have in mind to fill that requirement is Achraf Hakimi, who has established himself as one of the world’s most dangerous wing-backs at Inter Milan.
He provided seven goals and eight assists in his debut campaign in Serie A after joining from Real Madrid. That form helped Inter win the title, but their financial situation may force them to sell some key players.
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However, they have now been warned against selling Hakimi to Chelsea (or Paris Saint-Germain, who are also keen).
Former Nerazzurri striker Alessandro Altobelli believes the Blues would be getting one of the best in the world if they signed him.
“To me, a player like Hakimi is irreplaceable. He’s one of the best in Europe, dare I say in the world,” Altobelli said (via Goal).
“He’s a generous and hard-working wing-back, he’s superb during the attacking phase and he’s now learned how to be efficient during the defensive one as well.
“He drives forward with the ball so many times during a game. He’s one of those box-to-box wing-backs; he doesn’t stop running during a game.
“Not only does he have the work rate, but he backs it up with his quality in possession.
“Losing him will be a big blow for Inter. He can’t be replaced; at the moment the market doesn’t offer a substitute for Hakimi.”
Chelsea could do swap deal
Inter are aware of how important Hakimi is and for that reason are holding out for €80m. Chelsea and PSG have so far reached around €60m in the bidding, but could up their offers.
Chelsea, for example, have several players who appeal to Inter that they could include in the deal.
According to Sky Sports, Marcos Alonso, Emerson Palmieri, David Zappacosta and Andreas Christensen have all been ‘discussed in talks’. Therefore, Chelsea could have the advantage.
Barring Christensen, none of the quartet have featured to a significant degree under Tuchel. As such, it seems likely Chelsea would be willing to allow Inter their pick of the bunch to help bring Hakimi to England.
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