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Chelsea: Fabrizio Romano reveals interest in Moises Caicedo

Chelsea are monitoring Brighton midfielder Moises Caicedo after their move for Enzo Fernandez broke down, according to Fabrizio Romano.

What’s the word?

Chelsea’s negotiations to sign Fernandez from Benfica broke down after they refused to pay his 120m (£105m) release clause, and are now exploring other options in the market.

One name which they are looking at is Caicedo, who Graham Potter signed at Brighton last year. The 21-year-old has been impressive for his club this season, starting in all but one of their Premier League games, and is valued at around 30m (£27m) by CIES Football Observatory.

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Speaking on his YouTube channel, Romano claimed that the midfielder, who has been hailed as a “ridiculous” player, was now on Potter’s radar again as they look for Fernandez alternatives.

“Chelsea are now focused on other potential players. I would keep an eye on other midfielders too, let’s see if Chelsea will decide to return for Enzo or go for another one,” he stated.

“For example, a player they are following is Moises Caicedo from Brighton, who Graham Potter knows very well.”

Long-term investments

It is clear that Chelsea’s strategy under owner Todd Boehly is to sign younger players to build for the future.

A number of elite youngsters have arrived at the club including Omari Hutchinson and Carney Chukwuemeka, and they are seeking out young central midfielders as they prepare to move on from Jorginho and N’Golo Kante.

Both Fernandez and Caicedo are 21, and both have some, albeit limited, experience at a high level. Potter knows Caicedo well, and could bring him as a familiar face to follow Marc Cucurella to Stamford Bridge.

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Cesc Fabregas in action for Chelsea

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Although a deal could be expensive, with Brighton reportedly setting a price tag of around £80m, it may be a difficult deal to do, particularly if Potter’s side do not qualify for the Champions League this season.

Their ability to complete a future deal for Fernandez may also depend upon their European status, but if they are able to secure big signings in January, then they would stand a better chance of qualification in the second half of this season.