N’Golo Kante looks to be edging closer to the exit door at Leicester, with Chelsea seemingly at the front of the queue for his signature.
The Frenchman is believed to have a £20m release clause in his contract, and is reported to be keen on a move to Stamford Bridge after turning down a new deal at the King Power.
Any move could be scuppered, however, by the Chinese football revolution. Shanghai SIPG, managed by Sven-Goran Eriksson, are said to also be interested, and willing to pay over £30m.
If Kante does arrive, the Blues are said to be open to allowing Nemanja Matic to leave. Juventus are believed to have enquired about the Serbian midfielder.
Joao Mario is another player whose club have placed a large asking price on his head. The Metro say Sporting Lisbon want £50m for one of the stars of Portugal’s victorious Euro 2016 campaign.
His father is quoted as saying, “Sporting say Joao is worth €60m but they pay him like he’s a €10m player!”
While Mario’s star is in the ascendancy, Arda Turan’s has been waning recently. His big money move to Barcelona has flopped, and he was booed by his own fans while playing for Turkey at Euro 2016.
Chelsea and Arsenal are rumoured to be interested in rescuing him from his Nou Camp nightmare, as are Borussia Dortmund and Fenerbahce.
Antonio Conte isn’t just looking to add to his midfield, however. Kalidou Koulibaly is still being linked to Stamford Bridge, but Napoli seem to be playing hardball.
The Independent say the Italian club are asking for £50m for the centre-half, who is in a contract dispute with them. Everton are also said to be keen.
Real Madrid are said to have changed their mind on the future of Alvaro Morata, and now want to keep the Spanish striker.
On the plus side, this does make Eden Hazard more likely to stay. Real were rumoured to be willing to use Morata as a makeweight in a deal for Hazard.
Jose Mourinho has been dealt a blow by the news that Willian has signed a new four-year contract, doubling his wages to £120,000 per week.
The former Blues boss was reported to be keen on Chelsea’s player of the year.
Mourinho is said to now be keen on signing Cesc Fabregas. The pair enjoy a good relationship, and Conte is thought to have reservations about Fabregas’ ability to play in a 4-4-2 system.
More positive news comes with Thibaut Courtois apparently being willing to stay after Conte’s arrival.
The new manager has bought Gianluca Spinelli with him as goalkeeping coach. He replaces Christophe Lollichon, with whom Courtois had a strained relationship.
Contribution by Joe Shread