Chelsea: Madrid defender tempted; new bid for Romagnoli; PSG captain to leave
As Antonio Conte seeks to add to his defence, the Daily Mirror report that Real Madrid defender Pepe is considering an offer from the Blues with his contract in Madrid set to expire in the summer. That would allow the Portugal central defender to leave the Bernabeu on a free transfer to move to Stamford Bridge, meaning that whilst his wages may not be the cheapest of all the options, the club can avoid paying a fee and add a bargain addition to their backline.
Pepe’s combative style is likely to take time to adapt to the Premier League but he certainly has most of the key attributes required to prove a hit for the club should he make the move once his contract expires at the end of June, with a decision expected well before then.
The Sun claim that one such more expensive addition could be AC Milan prodigy Alessio Romagnoli. The 21-year-old made his Italy debut this campaign after Conte had several bids rejected by the San Siro club as they tried to secure his services in August, but now it seems they could try again with a £49 million bid expected to test the resolve of the Italians.
Romagnoli is tipped for big things with his calm and composed style on the ball fitting the Conte mould perfectly. With vast experience despite his young age, if Chelsea can secure his services then he could easily go on to become a club icon in a similar way to John Terry as a long term option for the club.
Another option for Conte could be Paris Saint-Germain captain Thiago Silva as Metro claim that the Brazilian is open to a move away from France with Chelsea said to be hovering and Stamford Bridge a potential destination for the 32-year-old. Like Pepe, his contract is set to expire in the summer and he could depart Paris on a free transfer if terms can be agreed.
The news is likely to alert the Blues, with Thiago Silva the kind of leader that the Blues backline is sorely lacking in the absence of John Terry. Whilst Conte is keen to bring more youngsters into the Chelsea set-up given their ageing squad, he will still recognise the need for leadership and experience in the side and the supreme quality of Thiago Silva.
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