Chelsea have drawn up a five man shortlist of alternatives as they look to recover from their disappointment over missing out on defender Jules Kounde.
The Blues were thought to be close to a deal for the Sevilla defender, but Barcelona have once again swooped in to deny them one of their targets this summer, having already done so for Leeds United winger Raphinha.
Barcelona feelings, again in the same direction: Jules Koundé, considered ‘close’ – he wants the move. Chelsea are already exploring other options, as deal with Sevilla’s stalling since last week. 🚨🇫🇷 #FCB
Barça official bid expected soon, as personal terms are already agreed. pic.twitter.com/HAmRo8HVGc
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 25, 2022
And, while Chelsea are not totally out of the race for his signature, it seems as though the Blaugrana are firmly in the driving seat.
As a result, 90min report that Thomas Tuchel and co. have already drawn up a list of five alternatives as they look to strengthen a defence that is currently at least one man light, with only Kalidou Koulibaly arriving to fill the gap left by the departures of Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen this summer.
Pau Torres is thought to be near the top of the list, with the Villareal centre-back having a release clause in his contract making the deal a relatively easy one to achieve.
Inter Milan defender Milan Skriniar and RB Leipzig centre-back Josko Gvardiol are also under consideration, with RB Leipzig’s interest in Timo Werner potential leverage in a deal for the latter.
Additionally, a pair of Bayern Munich defenders, in the form of Dayot Upamecano and Benjamin Pavard, feature, though Pavard may be an easier deal to complete than that of his teammate, who only joined Bayern last summer.