Chelsea after Stoke’s Jack Butland as Real Madrid eye Courtois

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Chelsea are mulling over a move for Stoke City goalkeeper Jack Butland, according to reports.

The Blues are reputedly keeping tabs on the Potters ace after it emerged that current number one Thibaut Courtois could be the subject of a move by Real Madrid.

Los Blancos are long-term admirers of Manchester United’s David de Gea.

But with the Spaniard set to be offered a new contract at Old Trafford in the coming months, Real look set to turn their attention to Chelsea’s Belgian stopper.

And if a move for Courtois does materialise, that would leave Antonio Conte short between the sticks.

Butland, who has been linked with a move to Manchester City in the past, appears to be the obvious replacement.

The 24-year-old has suffered from injury problems over the past 18 months but remains one of hottest properties in the Premier League.

His good form has led to multiple England call-ups as well as an almost certain World Cup berth, injuries permitting.

However, a move for the 6ft 5in stopper won’t come cheap.

Stoke are believed to value the ex-Birmingham City man towards the north end of the £30m mark.

For a player who has only played 18 times since March 2016, that’s a lot of money.

But with Courtois potentially making the switch to the Bernabeu, it’s a risk that the West Londoners could be forced to take.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Nick Murphy

Nick is a graduate of the University of East Anglia where he doubled up as the sports editor of the student newspaper Concrete. He also supports Dagenham & Redbridge and previously edited the matchday programme at Victoria Road. Other passions include darts, cricket and horse racing.