Spanish TV show El Chiringuito has claimed that Chelsea have moved ahead of Manchester United in the chase for Real Madrid attacker James Rodriguez, reports the Metro.
Reports in Colombia stated earlier this month that United were closing in on the signing of James, but now the narrative has changed.
El Chiringuito believes that Chelsea are closer than their Premier League rivals to agreeing a deal with the Colombian, who has struggled for game time this season, starting just 17 La Liga games.
The report claims that United manager Jose Mourinho has opted to focus on other targets.
It is believed that Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo has asked James to stay at the Bernabeu, but the 25-year-old has decided to move on.
There is no doubt that he has the ability to thrive in the Premier League, but his failure to make a significant impact in Madrid is a cause for concern.
It is likely that the Spanish giants will demand a hefty figure for him, which is risky for the buying club considering there is a big chance that he might not deliver.
One could argue that Madrid have a pool of world-class talent, but it has not just been this season where James has been relatively quiet – it has been across a three-year spell.
Chelsea need to be clever in this summer’s transfer window and make sure that they do not make risky decisions given that they want to maintain their dominance in the Premier League.
On top of that, the Blues want to make an impression on their return to the Champions League, and while James would be a positive option, there is a danger that he could just became a luxury player without real impact.