Chelsea Plotting £33m Double Swoop As Conte Eyes New Defender & Midfielder
Chelsea boss Antonio Conte is eyeing a double swoop for a centre-back and a defensive midfielder that could set the club back £32m.
The summer transfer window is in full swing so we’ll bring you all the latest transfer rumours and gossip from around the globe. Today, Chelsea are ready to make a move for Lamine Kone and Thiago Maia….
Chelsea are eyeing a double swoop for Sunderland centre-back Lamine Kone and Santos defensive midfielder Thiago Maia that could set them back £32m, according to the Daily Mail.
Antonio Conte is desperately trying to bring in another central defender before the end of the summer but has so far been frustrated in his attempts to sign top target Kalidou Koulibaly.
The Senegal international has been strongly linked with a move to Stamford Bridge this summer after putting in some excellent displays for Napoli in Serie A over the past couple of seasons.
The Daily Mail claim that Chelsea have seen their latest £38m offer rejected by the Italians, who are unwilling to sell until they secure a replacement, so Conte is being forced to look at alternative targets with Sunderland’s Lamine Kone now on his radar.
Kone only moved to the Stadium of Light from Lorient in January but was hugely impressive during the second half of last season as the Black Cats escaped relegation form the Premier League.
However, the Blues will face stiff competition for Kone’s signature as the newspaper says that Everton have already submitted an £18m offer so Chelsea are going to have to match that bid if they want to stand a chance of signing the Ivory Coast international.
I’m sure Conte would feel confident of persuading the 27-year-old to opt for a move to West London over Merseyside if the club went up against Everton for Kone’s signature, but we’ll have to wait and see whether Chelsea decide to make a formal move.
And if they do then Kone could be part of a double swoop from Conte as the Daily Mail claim that the former Juventus coach is also eyeing a £15m move for Santos defensive midfielder Thiago Maia.
The 19-year-old has been impressing with Santos since breaking in to the first team two years ago and has started in both of Brazil’s games so far at the Rio Olympics this summer, and it looks as though he’s caught the eye of Chelsea scouts.
The Blues have already signed N’Golo Kante from Leicester City but with Nemanja Matic strongly linked with a move away this summer Conte may need to strengthen his midfield options and it looks like he’s eyeing a move for Maia.
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We’ll have to wait and see how things develop but with the new Premier League season set to get underway this weekend, Conte is going to want any more transfer business wrapped-up soon, so we should see him step-up his interest in the likes of Kone and Maia over the coming days.