Chelsea go on scouting mission to track £53m star who could solve Todd Boehly conundrum
Chelsea’s midfield is in desperate need of a refresh and they have been linked with one of the upcoming stars in this position.
This season has been nothing short of a disaster for Chelsea and Todd Boehly is keen on putting things right next season. The club are already underway with their scouting and have several stars in their sights.
Mauricio Pochettino remains the favourite to take the Chelsea job and he will want assurances regarding the club’s recruitment.
While Boehly’s track record with recruitment hasn’t been great so far, the strategy did take an obvious turn in the January window.
Chelsea committed to signing young and upcoming players like Mykhailo Mudryk and Enzo Fernandez who could have big futures at Stamford Bridge.
With this sort of recruitment in mind, they have recently taken a look at Manuel Ugarte. The Uruguayan midfielder has impressed with Sporting Lisbon this year.
According to Football Insider, Chelsea have sent a scout to watch the midfielder. His deal with Sporting runs until 2026, but he is said to be keen on the move.
Along with Chelsea, the likes of Newcastle and Liverpool have been linked. His release clause at the Portuguese club is set at £53million.
The 22-year-old has been capped eight times by Uruguay and has caught Chelsea’s attention. The combative midfielder isn’t afraid of getting stuck in and has been booked 10 times this season.
His underlying numbers have also been impressive. Winning an average of 3.9 tackles per game, that is far more than any Chelsea player has managed.
Is he a natural N’Golo Kante replacement?
From Chelsea’s perspective, it is well worth considering a long-term replacement for Kante. The midfielder has missed the majority of the season through injury and has only played eight matches so far.
The French star is out of contract at the end of the season and he is yet to commit to a new deal. While a new deal is being considered, a player like Ugarte could fill his boots.
Unlike Kante, Ugarte has been a mainstay in the starting 11 this season. The 22-year-old has only missed two league matches this season due to suspension.
Kante himself is weighing up offers from around the globe. Arsenal have been linked with a move for the 32-year-old, but he also has offers from outside Europe.
TEAMtalk has been told several teams from the Saudi Pro League are hoping to tempt him to the Middle East on a free transfer.
Having already attracted Cristiano Ronaldo to Al-Nassr in January, the Saudi Pro League is looking to boost its profile further by signing more stars from Europe.
Reportedly, several of the league’s clubs are exploring other big-name signings, with Kante high up in their thinking.
A highly-lucrative contract offer could tempt Kante to the league. Chelsea are well aware that they need to cut down their squad and French midfielder could be one of the next stars to depart.
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