Chelsea hope third huge bid for an Italy-based defender sticks

Chelsea haven’t had much luck throwing wads of cash at Italian clubs in the hope of signing a centre-half, but the Londoners hope it’ll be third time lucky as they set their sights on Alessio Romagnoli.

The Blues have reportedly tried to send £60m Juventus’ way for Italy international Leonardo Bonucci and even had £51m rejected by Napoli for Senegalese star Kalidou Koulibaly.

However, neither of those two rejections have dissuaded them from trying to land Romagnoli, who The Sun say will be the subject of a £50m bid this January.

The AC Milan star, who has played in six of the club’s seven league games this season, is far younger than both of the Blues’ previous two targets at the age of 21.

He is also far less experienced with only two Azzurri caps to his name compared to 64 for Bonucci and six for Koulibaly.

With just 85 club outings under his belt, Romagnoli has also played 297 fewer club matches than his compatriot and 132 less than the Napoli man.

It seems risky, then, for the Blues to spend so much on such a relatively unproven defender, with their desperation to add to their backline becoming abundantly clear.

A failure to land any of these three targets saw Antonio Conte bring Brazilian calamity David Luiz back to Stamford Bridge on transfer Deadline Day.

The Londoners have only kept one clean sheet in the four games the former Paris Saint-Germain player has started since, seemingly convincing Conte to dip back into the transfer market this winter.

Chelsea’s defensive nous will be tested at home to Leicester when Premier League action returns this weekend, with the hosts given a 6/4 chance of keeping a clean sheet.

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


Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.