Graham Potter tipped to sever ties with forgotten man as Serie A giants eye cut-price move for Chelsea flop

Hakim Ziyech Mateo Kovacic Chelsea 2022 TEAMtalk1 Credit: Alamy
Hakim Ziyech Mateo Kovacic Chelsea 2022 TEAMtalk1 Credit: Alamy

AC Milan appear set to move for Chelsea forward Hakim Ziyech in January and believe they can land him for a reasonable fee.

The 29-year-old moved to Stamford Bridge in the summer of 2020 when the Blues paid Ajax €40m for his signature. However, the Morocco international has failed to make the expected impact in west London. He was handed only 15 starts among 23 top-flight appearances in 2020-2021, scoring twice.

The following campaign saw him enjoy the same number of league outings but make one less start, with four goals.

The Netherlands-born midfielder was a regular scorer for the Amsterdam giants, netting 21 in all competitions during 2018-19.

But he has yet to find the net this term, with a combination of Thomas Tuchel and Graham Potter continually overlooking him.

Ziyech has played just 148 minutes of Premier League football from five outings and one start.

The former FC Twente star has also seen limited action in Europe, with three substitute appearances in the Champions League.

Unsurprisingly, he was linked with a move away from the Bridge during the summer. However, a switch of club failed to materialise and he continues to warm the bench.

There have been links to Tottenham but, earlier his month, Ziyech reportedly made it clear he wanted to join Milan.

That report came from Calciomercato but it was unclear whether the Italian outfit felt the same way about him arriving.

But now, La Gazzetta dello Sport have firmed up the rumour, suggesting the Rossoneri will look to swoop in the winter window.

Milan seeking low-cost Ziyech deal

Chelsea’s initial outlay on the ex-Heerenveen attacker was not seen as excessive in the current climate of huge transfer fees.

However, given his lack of contribution to the side’s cause, it will now be considered as poor business.

Milan will not want to make the same mistake. And the same report claims Il Diavolo may have to part with just €20m to land their target in the new year.

That would represent a significant loss for Chelsea, as he is under contract with his present employers until 2025.

Milan have plans for Ziyech capture

As with most players at top Premier League clubs, Ziyech commands a large wage packet. He is said to earn in the region of €6m net per season.

Milan will reportedly look to sell in January in order to fund the deal, with Yacine Adli rumoured to be on his way.

The former France Under-20 midfielder is in his first season at the San Siro after joining in the summer of 2021.

He was loaned back to Bordeaux last term and made his Milan debut in a 2-0 triumph over Bologna back in August.

However, in a season mirroring that of Ziyech’s, he has failed to push on and may be jettisoned mid season.

Manager Stefano Pioli has not been impressed but is said to be keen on Ziyech. It remains to be seen whether a deal can be done.

But the man with 42 international caps to his name needs to be playing. Other clubs may enter the picture after the World Cup.

And, unless Potter has a change of plan, a January exit seems on the cards.

READ MORE: Chelsea reaction: Graham Potter highlights how his side were overrun in Newcastle defeat, explaining what they lacked

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