Chelsea close in on £55m Jules Kounde, with confidence that a deal will FINALLY be completed as Barcelona ‘give up and target Athletic Bilbao’s Inigo Martinez instead’… leaving Blues to take Todd Boehly’s summer transfer spending to £134m
- Barcelona made a late attempt to try and sign defender Jules Kounde
- Chelsea are now set to agree a fee of £55m with Sevilla for the defender
- Barcelona are now turning their attention to Athletic Bilbao’s Inigo Martinez
Chelsea are nearing the completion of a deal to sign Sevilla defender Jules Kounde with Barcelona set to give up on their attempts to sign him due to a lack of funds.
The two clubs have been battling it out over the 23-year-old’s signature this summer, having both tabled significant offers for the Frenchman in the last week.
It’s understood that Chelsea have a £55m deal in place for the France international, who travelled to Lagos in Portugal for their training camp after agreeing a five-year contract.
Jules Kounde is expected to sign for Chelsea in a deal worth £55million from Sevilla
The LaLiga giants made a last ditch attempt to persuade Kounde to join them after they raised more funds with another rights sale on Thursday – but they were unable to match the Blues.
Spanish outlet Sport claim they have now turned their attention to Athletic Bilbao defender Inigo Martinez.
Sevilla were inclined to accept the Blues’ bid over that of Barcelona as it offers straight cash while Barca were proposing players such as Memphis Depay.
The Frenchman made 32 appearances in LaLiga last season as Sevilla finished fourth
Chelsea are looking to bring in Kounde on a five-year deal as they aim to strengthen their central defensive options.
Thomas Tuchel is eager to bring in more centre-backs following the departures of Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger.
The Blues have already signed Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli and are holding discussions with Paris Saint-Germain over Presnel Kimpembe. Josko Gvardiol of RB Leipzig is also being considered.