Chelsea join Liverpool in hunt for French star

Chelsea are ready to go head-to-head with Liverpool in the race for Real Sociedad winger Antoine Griezmann, according to reports from The Express.

The Reds have been linked with a £20m move for the French World Cup star amid talk that Brendan Rodgers is ready to take his transfer spending to close to £100m following news that Luis Suarez will be leaving Anfield to join Barcelona.

Arsenal have also been aligned with Griezmann, but with Alexis Sanchez now through the door at the Emirates Stadium, it’s unlikely that Arsene Wenger will push hard for his compatriot.

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But Liverpool will not have a free ride, with Chelsea now in the battle.

The Blues have a wealth of attacking talent at the club – including a number of stars who have been loaned out – but Jose Mourinho is thought to be a fan of Griezmann.

The 25-year-old looks set to leave Sociedad after rejecting a new contract, and could be available for around £25m with the club aware that his value will only decrease over the remaining 24 months of his current deal.

Griezmann netted 16 goals in La Liga last term, making him one of Spanish football’s standout performers outside of the Madrid and Barcelona-based top three.

Although Liverpool will offer him a greater chance of first-team action, Chelsea’s financial power and London location may be big factors.