Chelsea have earmarked Borussia Dortmund star Christian Pulisic as a possible replacement for Eden Hazard this summer, reports suggest.
According to the Daily Mail, the Blues have identified United States international Pulisic as a major summer transfer target, with the club considering options should Hazard move on at the end of the season.
Hazard insists he is happy at Stamford Bridge but has maintained “in football anything can happen” as he continues to be linked with moves to Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain.
Pulisic, regarded as one of world football’s best young talents, is now on Chelsea’s radar, according to the report. The Blues are not alone in their admiration for the 19-year-old, however.
Manchester United remain firm admirers of the versatile playmaker and according to a report from the Independent in January, are ready to challenge Liverpool should the Anfield club move forward with an offer for the American starlet during the summer transfer window.
The Premier League trio face a stern task in convincing Dortmund to part with their prized asset, however. The Mail suggest Dortmund will demand a fee of £88m for Pulisic, having squeezed a similarly exorbitant fee out of Barcelona last summer over the sale of Ousmane Dembele – who signed for the Catalan giants for £135.5m. [The Guardian].
Bayern Munich pose perhaps the biggest threat to one of the Premier League trio winning the race to sign Pulisic. According to German publication Kicker, he is one of the targets the club are considering as they begin to plan for life without Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery, both 34. Pulisic is a particularly intriguing option for the Bavarian giants as they look to look to build on their expansion into the US market.
Chelsea could have one ace up their sleeve however in the form of Michy Batshuayi. The Belgium international joined Dortmund on deadline day during the January transfer window and has effortlessly set about filling the void left by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, scoring five goals in his first four appearances for the club.
Dortmund do not have an option to make the loan deal permanent but have already suggested they will explore the option of striking a new deal with Chelsea at the end of the season. The Mail suggest Dortmund’s interest in doing a deal for the Belgian “could yet prove a factor” when Chelsea choose to formally declare their interest in Pulisic.
Source : IBtimes