Chelsea: AC Milan reject bid; Koulibaly update; player sale confirmed
There was some surprising news emanating from Italy last night as it emerged that AC Milan had rejected a £30 million bid for defender Alessio Romagnoli, claim Sky Sports. The 21-year-old established himself in the Milan first team last season making 34 appearances at the heart of the side’s defence, drawing comparisons in the Italian media with the likes of Alessandro Nesta for his calm and composed style on the ball and superb anticipation and positioning. Antonio Conte monitored him closely as he played for Italy under 21s when he was in charge of the national team, and could now try to bring him to London.
Romagnoli fits the bill of what Chelsea need well. Conte is desperate for a defensive addition and at 21 years of age he could provide the kind of long term solution to replace John Terry as the 35-year-old captain winds down his career at Stamford Bridge. Milan are reluctant to sell but may be forced to if the finances dictate that they should, so there may be room for Chelsea to negotiate a deal for the Italian, and it seems he would be worth it.
The news of the rejection comes just before news broke of yet another bid to Napoli for Kalidou Koulibaly, as Gazetto dello Sporto report that the London club have made a £50 million bid, including £2.7 million of variables, in an attempt to finally persuade the Italians so allow their central defender to leave. To date, Napoli have refused to negotiate over any deal and have done their best to persuade the Senegal international to sign a new deal, but that now seems unlikely as the player is keen on a move to Chelsea.
As one of the club’s top targets this summer, it has been a source of huge frustration for the club that they have failed to secure the player before the season kicked off, with Napoli proving difficult to do business with. Chelsea still remain determined to get their man though and it seems inevitable that the Italian club will be forced into accepting an offer at some point before the transfer window slams shut at the end of the month. If not, the Blues will continue to seek other options, such as Romagnoli and many other targets.
There has also been an outgoing as Marko Marin has finally completed a permanent move away from Stamford Bridge to finalise his career as one of the biggest flops seen at Chelsea in recent years. The 27-year-old made 16 appearances and had four loan spells across a four year stay at Stamford Bridge and never did enough to justify a first team place under various managers, and has now been sold for just £2.6 million to Olympiakos, representing a £4.4 million loss on the club’s investment, claim the Express.
Whilst it is never good to lose money on a player, the Blues will be relieved to finally have Marin off of the wage books as he has not made an appearance for the club since 2013 and is way below the level of quality expected by Antonio Conte for players to compete for a place in the first team.
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