Chelsea’s interest in Radamel Falcao has long been mooted, and the Blues may soon finally broker a deal for the Colombian striker, using one of their top prospects as bait.
Thibaut Courtois is the player in question, and is more than familiar with Falcao’s club Atletico Madrid, where the young goalkeeper is currently spending his second successive season on loan.
The Belgian has impressed immensely in Spain, drawing admiring glances from the likes of Barcelona after helping Atletico lift the Europa League title last year.
He has carried his good form into this season too, with the 20-year-old again proving a key component in the side’s ascendency to second place in La Liga.
And though Courtois would appear to be a natural successor to long-standing Chelsea number one Petr Cech, the Blues now look willing to part ways with the promising stopper.
With Cech just 30 years old, the need to find his replacement is not yet seen as pressing as the obligation to bring in a proven top-level goalscorer.
As former Atletico man Fernando Torres continues to misfire, the desire to sign world football’s hottest striking property looks stronger than ever at Stamford Bridge.
And in landing Falcao in a player-plus-cash deal, the reigning European champions would secure the services of a man who has bagged 22 goals in just 21 appearances this term.
A substantial transfer fee would still be required to tempt Atletico to part with such a prized possession, one they themselves paid close to £35m for two years ago.
But Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is said to be willing to part with a massive £47m to bring the Colombian powerhouse to London.
That type of money, coupled with a very re-saleable asset in Courtois, could prove an offer too difficult to resist for Atletico Madrid this summer.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.