Chelsea set £38m transfer price that impacts Christopher Nkunku as personal terms issue clear

Chelsea attacker Christopher Nkunku

Chelsea are expected to be busy in the summer window once again despite not completing a single deal in January. It comes with the Blues seeking to comply with the Premier League's new and also upcoming financial regulations.

The club are thought to be in need of significant funds coming in before they can truly turn their attention towards fresh arrivals, but that hasn't stopped them looking for options. Even if the future of their head coach still isn't clear, the co-sporting directors have seemingly been busy establishing targets.

Here, takes a look at the most recent reports and offers a view as to how the deals could be seen. Starting with one of the least value-for-money signings in football history.

Chelsea set Lukaku price tag

After two loans, Chelsea have reportedly listed Romelu Lukaku for permanent sale yet again. The Belgian is thought to have been looking for a move away from Stamford Bridge last year too before only being able to agree a temporary switch to Roma.

He has managed 20 goals in competitions so far this season, boosted by seven in the Europa League - a competition he is far too good to be playing in - isn't likely to feature for Chelsea again. Still with two years left on his initial five-year deal, Fabrizio Romano reports that Chelsea will hold out for £38million in order to let him go.

This would help them secure a break even on the books even despite spending just one year at Stamford Bridge after his £97million transfer from Inter in 2021. Roma aren't the side to look out for in terms of offers though.

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"Even if AS Roma qualifies for the Champions League next season, it’s still going to be very difficult for the Italian club to keep Romelu Lukaku for the 2024/25 season," he explained. "It’s a really expensive deal with Chelsea as the striker has a £38million clause and also the player’s wages will be high.

"I expect Roma to move on from Lukaku this summer, leaving Chelsea to look at different solutions for Romelu as he will not return to the Italian capital. There is interest from Saudi Arabia but that is not the only possibility for the striker. The 30-year-old is still young and is still a top player, which he has shown this season by scoring 20 goals in a Roma shirt." says: The quicker a permanent deal is done the better. Lukaku leaving will end this strange relationship and stop the constant questions each year over whether he will return. Mauricio Pochettino doesn't need that, and neither does anybody else.

Ensuring that Chelsea have a clean break from Lukaku will mean that the current options can plan for the season ahead as well. Nicolas Jackson could do with some more help up front but that may well come from Christopher Nkunku next year. No Lukaku will mean both players have plenty of game time to share even if a different No.9 was to arrive.

As for the money, this wasn't Todd Boehly-Clearlake Capital inspired in the first place and the money they have got from Lukaku on his loans so far will be beneficial. Getting a lump sum in a transfer will be crucial moving forward though.

Chelsea really just need to cut their losses and get the Belgian off their books in any way possible. Saudi Arabia could come calling and that seems like the most likely destination, but if it isn't to be then the sporting directors will have to get creative.

Nico Williams stumbling block

Athletic Club forward Nico Williams is said to want over £200,000 per week in order to leave his boyhood side this summer. Chelsea are one of many clubs to have their eyes on the 21-year-old, understands, with Aston Villa also in the mix.

Williams only signed a new deal with the Basque side in December, tying him down until 2027, but it is said that a £43million release clause exists in his deal. Given Chelsea's aim to lower the wage bill, Williams' reported demands could throw up an obstacle regardless. says: If Williams is the answer then the question really isn't too clear. The Spaniard may well be extremely talented but Chelsea already have raw and pacey wingers on long contracts and don't particularly need another.

It would be a serious blow to Omari Hutchinson, for example, who has shone on loan at Ipswich and will only have 12 months left on his own deal by the time he returns. Just how another attacker of this mould fits into the project and planning simply isn't clear.

Williams is a player to admire from afar rather than pin hopes on currently. What Pochettino would think to the club signing another player below the age of 22 isn't clear but it likely wouldn't be too full of joy.