A Chelsea exit is expected to be sealed ‘today’, while a second deal that will net the Blues a tidy windfall is reportedly at the player’s mercy.
Chelsea retain genuine ambitions of making another splash in the market. Romelu Lukaku re-signed for a club record £97.5m to bring a clinical edge up front. A deal for a centre-half remains on their agenda, with Sevilla’s Jules Kounde again making the headlines earlier this week.
However, before further acquisitions are made, Chelsea are intent on trimming the fat of their squad. Indeed, a recent report revealed Thomas Tuchel has told a £90m midfield trio their Chelsea careers are over.
Elsewhere, expendable full-back Emerson Palmieri appears bound for Lyon. The 27-year-old is surplus to requirements with Ben Chilwell and the resurgent Marcos Alonso vying for the left wing-back role.
A return to Serie A had been mooted, but French side Lyon made the strongest move.
Emerson is expected to join Lyon on a one-year loan deal, but will first extend his Chelsea contract. That will ensure he does not become a free agent upon the loan’s conclusion and is the formula Chelsea followed with the recently departed Michy Batshuayi.
Trusted journalist Fabrizio Romano tweeted Emerson ‘will complete his move to Lyon today (Thursday)’ once his medical is completed. Another exit could soon follow in the form of rarely seen striker, Ike Ugbo.
Ugbo, who is 22 years old, has never played a professional game for Chelsea. Since graduating their academy, the Lewisham-born forward has been on loan to five different destinations.
He impressed on his most recent excursion with Belgian side Cercle Brugge, operating at a goal every other game.
That led to speculation of a permanent exit, which could generate Chelsea a small windfall. There was talk of a €5m move to Genk, another Belgian side. In fact, he has already been in advanced talks with them and a medical was booked in.
However, Foot Mercato claim that Ugbo is now taking time to reflect on his future decision because Marseille have now made an approach for his services.
And per Romano, Chelsea will leave the final decision up to the player. He stated ‘Chelsea are waiting for Ike Ugbo to decide between Genk and OM bids.’
“Complete” Lukaku bullish on Chelsea return
Meanwhile, Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku says that his experiences of football in Italy have helped him perfect the art of playing up front, upon his Premier League return.
“It’s the right move for me for the rest of my career because, with a lot of maturity and experience, you come back as a player who can hopefully add something to the team,” Lukaku told the Daily Mail.
“The coach wanted something different to add to the team. I think I’m different from all the players that he has.
“I don’t have to prove anything to anyone,” he added. “I’ve experienced success elsewhere and also a different playing style where it’s more technical-based and tactical.
“The Premier League has a bit of everything and the experiences I had a few years ago were great. I loved every minute of it but the experiences in Italy made me more complete as a player.
“Watching the Premier League over the last few years, the players have got better. The teams have got better and I am ready for the challenge.”