Tuchel connection could see Chelsea save £40m if West Ham raid fails

Date published: Wednesday 2nd June 2021 6:49 - Steve Pearson

Thomas Tuchel emotional during Champions League final, Chelsea, May 2021,

Thomas Tuchel’s prior connections could net Chelsea a £40m saving on a midfield purchase and free up extra money for a blockbuster striker signing.

Chelsea turned their campaign around in style after making the brave decision to axe club legend Frank Lampard mid-season. Tuchel was drafted in, and wasted little time transforming the Blues into a well-oiled winning machine. A top four place was secured, along with a memorable Champions League victory over English rivals Man City in Porto.

Chelsea were the biggest spenders last summer, capturing the likes of Ben Chilwell and Timo Werner, among others.

Tuchel is expected to be granted funds to make his mark in the window. But the £250m Lampard was afforded may not be available.

A striker appears to be the club’s top priority, with Harry Kane and Erling Haaland both frequently linked.

Alan Shearer believes Kane’s decision on his future has already been made. Elsewhere, Haaland recently dropped a subtle hint that would leave English clubs in limbo.

Whoever Chelsea opt to pursue, one thing is for sure, they won’t be cheap.

Perhaps with that in mind, the latest report from the Express details how Tuchel could make a significant saving while strengthening another part of the team.

Chelsea have been regularly linked with a West Ham raid to bring England midfielder Declan Rice to Stamford Bridge.

Rice has excelled once again this season, but English players moving within the Premier League typically carry greater transfer fees compared to deals for those from overseas.

Accordingly, the Express (citing Portuguese outlet O Jogo) reveal that Chelsea have ‘identified Benfica star Julian Weigl as an alternative’ to Rice.

Rice is projected to cost upwards of £65m, while the 25-year-old Weigl is stated to be available for £25.8m.

The holding midfielder is a known commodity for Tuchel having managed him during their time with Borussia Dortmund.

Chelsea, Man Utd primed after Arsenal punished

Meanwhile, Manchester United and Chelsea have made contact for Bayer Leverkusen centre-back Edmond Tapsoba, according to reports.

The rising 22-year-old appears to be a collision course with the Premier League. Arsenal were believed to be frontrunners, but they appear to have ended now, after SportBILD provided an update.

According to the German newspaper, Arsenal won’t be able to sign Tapsoba this summer after their low Premier League finish.

Edmond Tapsoba, Evan Ndicka TEAMtalk

However, Tapsoba could still end up in the Premier League. Per reports, Manchester United and Chelsea have now joined the race to sign him.

United were linked with Tapsoba back in March, when it was claimed they had been told to scout him. It appears they took that advice, as they are now in the running for his signature.

So too are Chelsea, though, who are looking for an additional defensive reinforcement to eventually succeed Thiago Silva. Tapsoba is the latest suggestion as Tuchel reportedly looks back to his homeland for recruitment.

READ MORE: Villa abort £40m Chelsea transfer as major Dean Smith doubt takes hold

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