Wolves were credited with an interest in the 18-year-old shot-stopper recently but were perhaps always up against it, with Real Madrid and Chelsea touted as the other sides keen on signing him.
It seems as if Thomas Tuchel’s side have now won the race to sign Slonina, as Fabrizio Romano confirmed on Twitter.
He said: “Chelsea have reached verbal agreement with Chicago Fire for Gabriel Slonina, after direct talks between Todd Boehly and MLS club. 10m deal plus add-ons, he’d stay at Chicago on loan. Chelsea are expected to submit official bid this week in order to get the deal done.”
Slonina looks to be the latest top talent emerging from the United States, with the likes of Sergiño Dest, Weston McKennie and Christian Pulisic having all established themselves at top European clubs in recent years.
The 18-year-old has been a regular for Chicago Fire in MLS across the past two seasons, making 30 appearances in total, in which he has conceded 43 goals and kept a respectable 11 clean sheets.
Although Wolves have arguably the best goalkeeper outside of the top six in Jose Sa, Slonina could have been an excellent long-term replacement for the Portugual international in between the sticks.
To be a fully established first-choice at just 18 emphasises Slonina’s potential and it seems likely that he will continue as first-choice on loan at Chicago Fire next season, with the hope that he can be a viable option for Chelsea in the future.
Considering Slonina was reportedly available for just £10m, he could’ve been a bargain option for Wolves, especially if he reached his potential and had a long career with the Old Gold.
Unfortunately, the teenage shot-stopper will join a long list of ones who got away from Lage, and this might be something the club end up regretting if Slonina is a success at Chelsea.