Diego Costa confirmed a few days ago that Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has told him he is not in his plans for the 2017-18 season. This is perhaps the result of the fiery striker’s widely-reported bust-up with his manager during the January transfer window. It was reported that the Spanish international had requested to leave the London club in January. He was linked with a £500,000 a week move to China.
Although Chelsea stuck to their guns and retained the former-Atletico Madrid star to help them win the Premier League title and reach the FA Cup final, it is obvious Conte does not trust him any more. With Costa apparently set to leave Stamford Bridge, Chelsea now have to bring in a replacement striker. The Blues have so far been linked with the signing of Romelu Lukaku from Everton, with some reports claiming the deal to bring the Belgian to West London has been agreed between the player and club.
The reports of Chelsea having agreed a deal with Lukaku however appears to be way off the mark. This is because newer reports are claiming Antonio Conte has asked Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich to help him get Manchester United target Alvaro Morata from Real Madrid. Morata was linked with a move to Chelsea last summer with reports claiming Real Madrid rejected Chelsea’s €60 million bid for the Champions League winner.
Instead, the 24-year-old striker has been linked with Manchester United in the last few weeks. Some reports even claim that the Red Devils are very close to signing the Spaniard. But this has not stopped Conte from wanting the striker at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea are reportedly said to be ready to offer Real Madrid as much as €70 million to sign the former-Juventus player. This figure is more than what United are reportedly offering, and with Real Madrid interested in signing Kylian Mbappe from AS Monaco, it is likely that the current La Liga champions will only sell to the highest bidder.
With Zlatan Ibrahimovic no longer a Manchester United player, and Diego Costa seemingly set to leave Chelsea, both clubs can afford to offer Alvaro Morata regular playing time. Morata could however favour a move to Manchester United ahead of Chelsea. And the reason for that is Jose Mourinho. But this is just a guess work – I have no insider knowledge about this transfer.
Another player Chelsea could be signing this summer is Morata’s teammate at Real Madrid, James Rodriguez. The former-FC Porto star has been linked with Manchester United, as well as Paris Saint-Germain, over the last few weeks. But it’s Chelsea who are ready to win the race for the signature of the player, by offering Real Madrid €75 million for his service, according to Sport (via the Metro).
If Chelsea succeed in their attempt to sign James, it will remain to be seen what happens to Willian, who would be the one most affected by his signing. Cesc Fabregas, who didn’t get many starts last season, could also be affected by the signing of the South American.