According to reports in the Evening Standard, Chelsea have been dealt a blow in their attempts to sign Southampton right-back Cedric Soares, whom they are willing to spend up to £20m on him.
Well, the Evening Standard says that Blues boss Antonio Conte has lined up a move for the 25-year-old to provide competition for Victor Moses in the right wing-back spot, and that he was willing to pay between £15m-£20m to bring him to Stamford Bridge before the transfer window slams shut at the end of this month.
However, the Evening Standard says a potential deal is looking less likely with Saints only likely to consider selling the Portugal international if they receive a ‘silly offer’.
The report adds that Cedric is keen on the move, but only if an agreement can be reached between the two clubs.
Chelsea may have some hope though, with the Evening Standard suggesting that Mauricio Pellegrino may have to sell before he can buy at St Mary’s following the takeover by a Chinese consortium earlier this week.
The right-back was a relatively unknown quantity when he joined Southampton from Sporting Lisbon two years ago, but he has quickly gone on to establish himself as one of the best in his position in the Premier League, as well as being Portugal’s first-choice there as the nation won the 2016 European Championships in France.
As well as being solid defensively – something that is important for Conte – Cedric also very much fits into the mould of a modern day full-back as he loves to get forward to cross and create chances for his teammates.
The 25-year-old made 29 of those in 19 Premier League appearances last season, while he successfully won 42 tackles, as well as making 65 clearances and 23 interceptions.
It seems unlikely unless Chelsea are willing to submit a huge offer, because £20m certainly won’t be enough
Southampton chairman Ralph Krueger has once again been speaking this week about how captain Virgil van Dijk and their other stars won’t be leaving this summer as the south coast outfit looks to make a statement, and the Blues are likely to have to look elsewhere with less than a fortnight to go until the window slams shut.