As Antonio Conte continues his search to add quality to his squad, Metro claim that Paris Saint-Germain have put a £68.2 million price tag on central midfielder Marco Verratti amid interest from the Blues and Juventus, who are looking to replace Paul Pogba. The Italian has become a key figure for Unai Emery’s side, but they would reportedly consider selling in order to fund the purchase of a star striker.
Verratti has been linked to the Blues before, mainly due to his time working with the Chelsea boss on the international scene before he moved to London in the summer.
An alternate target could be Atlanta youngster Franck Kessie, who is also subject to interest from Manchester United, but the deal remains in the early stages. His agent George Atangana told the Guardian:
“We have a lot of interest from the Premier League. I cannot say at this stage how much he will cost but we are talking about one of the best young players in the world. But for us the most important thing is that the technical project is the right one for him. Franck is very young so we have to be very careful about his development. Chelsea are very interested and it is a great club but we must take our time to consider all the options. Now we are in January so he has to play at the Africa Cup of Nations for Ivory Coast so I am not going to rush anything.”
They claim that a meeting is scheduled in London for this week for the 20-year-old’s representatives to discuss a possible deal for the holding midfielder.
He would almost be a like for like replacement for outgoing Nigeria man Mikel John Obi, who is set to undergo a medical at Chinese club Tianjin TEDA, say the Evening Standard. Mikel has not featured under Antonio Conte after almost ten years at Stamford Bridge.
Mikel had been linked with moves across Europe but now looks set to be the latest player to swap Stamford Bridge for China, following in the footsteps of Oscar.
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