Koulibaly deal prompts more negotiations between Chelsea and Napoli involving Kepa and one other

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Kepa Arrizabalaga warming up with Chelsea Credit: PA Images
Kepa Arrizabalaga warming up with Chelsea Credit: PA Images

The transfer of Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli to Chelsea could open the door for two players – one of whom is Kepa Arrizabalaga – to move in the opposite direction, according to reports.

It is only a matter of time before Koulibaly officially becomes a Chelsea player. Everything is in place for his transfer from Napoli to be announced. Chelsea will be getting their hands on one of the best defenders in the world.

In the process, though, they could lose two of their own fringe players. According to Gazzetta Dello Sport writer Alfredo Pedulla, relations between Chelsea and Napoli will be stronger after the Koulibaly deal.

As a result, the Serie A side are supposedly in negotiations to take Armando Broja and Kepa Arrizabalaga from the Blues.

Neither player played a significant part at Stamford Bridge last season. Broja was out on loan at Southampton, where he got good gametime; Kepa remained as backup goalkeeper to Edouard Mendy.

Now, Napoli have set their sights on both men. Their interest in Broja has already been documented, although they will likely face competition from the striker’s suitors in the Premier League.

As for Kepa, the link is a new one. The Spaniard is extremely likely to leave Chelsea this summer in favour of first-team football elsewhere.

Napoli’s main goalkeeper last season was former Arsenal man David Ospina. He has since left for Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr, though.

They still have Italy international Alex Meret among the ranks. However, another option will be required and they could turn to Kepa.

Pedulla predicts Napoli’s talks for Kepa and Broja will accelerate once Koulibaly is unveiled as a Chelsea player.

Chelsea face big decisions over Kepa and Broja

The Blues face big decisions with both players. Moving Kepa on seems to be sensible, although they know full well they won’t recoup their original €80m (£71.6m at the time) investment.

Any kind of departure at this stage would be in everyone’s best interests, though. Chelsea would then need to find a new deputy for first-choice shot-stopper Mendy.

At the opposite end of the pitch, their stance on Broja will be even more interesting. He enjoyed a breakout season with Southampton, although his goal record for them wasn’t spectacular.

Still, he has caught the eye of a number of other clubs. Yet Chelsea may have their own need for him after the departure of Romelu Lukaku to Inter.

Raheem Sterling has arrived as a replacement, but is not a centre-forward himself. Broja is, so there could be a space in the squad for them to occupy.

But Pedulla indicates that the positive relations between Chelsea and Napoli – who also did business for Jorginho a few years ago – could lead to a further arrangement involving Kepa and Broja.

READ MORE: Chelsea begin discussions with PSG for Presnel Kimpembe, as key factor gives Blues transfer advantage over Juventus

The article Koulibaly deal prompts more negotiations between Chelsea and Napoli involving Kepa and one other appeared first on Teamtalk.com.

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