Who's leading the way in the Premier League sack race?
We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info
Chelsea could be set to make rapid progress in their pursuit of Sevilla defender Jules Kounde, with Kurt Zouma passing a medical ahead of his proposed move to West Ham United on Friday, according to reports. The Blues have been chasing a move for Kounde since last month, but talks have failed to produce an agreement as of yet.
Thomas Tuchel has been eager to follow up the club-record signing of Romelu Lukaku with the addition of a top-class defender.
Kounde was reportedly identified as a target earlier this summer after establishing himself as one of La Liga’s finest young centre-backs with Sevilla.
He made a total of 49 appearances in all competitions last season and was rewarded for his good form with a place in France’s 26-man squad for Euro 2020.
Chelsea reportedly launched a move for Kounde a month ago but were reluctant to pay his release clause of around £77million.
Sevilla are said to have changed their stance in the weeks since, with the Spanish giants willing to accept a cut-price fee of £43m.
JUST IN: Cristiano Ronaldo to Manchester United transfer could benefit West Ham
The deal was also being held up by the need for Chelsea to sell at least one of their existing defenders.
West Ham have been keen on landing Zouma in recent weeks but there have been questions over the feasibility of a move before Tuesday’s deadline.
However, the 26-year-old now looks set to join the east London club after successfully completing a medical in France, according to Sky Sports.
The report claims that Zouma’s move is not done yet, with additional talks over the finer details still ongoing, but an agreement is said to be close.
Chelsea and West Ham have settled upon a £25m transfer fee and the player has agreed personal terms with his new club.
The move could allow the Blues to go all out for Kounde as they look to thrash out a deal with Sevilla in the remaining days of the transfer window.
Club chiefs are believed to be confident that a positive solution can be found before the end of the month, but there is still plenty of work to be done in order to push the move across the line.
Meanwhile, Spanish football expert Terry Gibson recently suggested that Kounde would be a fine addition to any Premier League club but warned that Sevilla will be looking to keep hold of their star man if at all possible.
THINK YOU KNOW SPORT? Test your sporting knowledge with our tricky quiz
“He would be an excellent fit for anybody in the Premier League and it’s no surprise that Chelsea are trying to get him,” Gibson told talkSPORT.
“He’s a diminutive central defender, but he’s really good in the air. He’s quick, good on the ball and can play centre-back and right-back as well.
“I think he’s an excellent player but I’d be surprised if it happens because Sevilla, having sold Bryan Gil, the player they wanted to keep is Jules Kounde.
“They are hoping that the finances received from Gil would enable them to keep him, but it appears perhaps the player believes it might be time to move on to a club which is challenging for the title.”
Source: Read Full Article