Transfers: Chelsea target Griezman, Grealish 'warned off' City
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Chelsea could land Kylian Mbappe in a sensational free transfer as they target alternatives to Erling Haaland. But Thomas Tuchel’s side would have to take a gamble while they wait for the PSG star to push for a move.
Haaland is Chelsea’s top target in the summer transfer window as Tuchel seeks out a top-class striker to turn his Champions League winners into a force in the Premier League.
But Borussia Dortmund are set to demand £150million as they look to keep hold of their star man for another season, with the striker set to be more affordable when his release clause becomes active next summer.
If Chelsea fail to sign the 21-year-old ahead of the new campaign, they risk missing out on him in a year’s time with Manchester United, Man City and Real Madrid all expected to join the race.
But the Stamford Bridge side could land an arguably even better player for nothing in January when Kylian Mbappe becomes free to talk to other clubs – although that would mean taking on a risk on other players in the meantime.
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Mbappe is reported to have told Paris Saint-Germain he wants to leave, but won’t push for a move until next year.
The French forward has entered the final year of his contract with the Ligue 1 side, meaning he will be free to strike a pre-contract agreement with clubs outside France from the start of 2022.
Landing the 22-year-old on a free would be an astonishing bargain – but it would give Tuchel a potential headache as he looks to challenge for the Premier League title next term.
if Chelsea failed to land Haaland or an alternative such as Romelu Lukaku, the manager would have to keep faith with Timo Werner and Kai Havertz.
Neither of last summer’s signings was prolific in front of goal last season – although Havertz did go some way towards justifying his £72m transfree fee with the goal that defeated Manchester City in the Champions League final.
Alternatively, Tuchel could sign a cheaper short-term option such as Southampton striker Danny Ings, in the hope he would provide the goals to put the Londoners in title contention.
Either way, the gaffer would be taking a gamble – as failure to compete for the top honour next term would put his job in jeopardy.
It is hard to imagine Tuchel’s job being in danger. with the manager having delivered the European Cup just four months after taking over from sacked Frank Lampard.
But Chelsea managers are always under pressure to deliver results – as Lampard found out when he was relieved of his duties in January just a season and a half into his reign.
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And Tuchel will be expected to build on Chelsea’s Champions League triumph by competing with City, United and Liverpool for the domestic crown next term.
If he does so, a move to Chelsea could prove attractive to a global star like Mbappe, who has been linked with a move to Liverpool or Real Madrid.
And beating those two heavyweights to the striker’s signature could herald a new era of domination for the Blues.
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