The Europa League champions are reportedly eyeing Brazilian international Philippe Coutinho to replace Eden Hazard – if they can overturn the transfer embargo slapped against them.
The Belgian international is leaving Stamford Bridge for Real Madrid this summer, and the Blues see Coutinho as the best fit for the job.
The wily Brazilian left Anfield and joined Barca for a whopping £142m deal 18 months ago. However, it was reported that he seemed to be surplus to the talent-laden Spanish club after Barcelona failed to lift the Champions League trophy this season. His dream of playing for Barca has turned sour and he may be tempted with a switch to Chelsea to fill Hazard’s boots. Hazard is set to leave Chelsea for Real Madrid to join Zinedine Zidane.
The English club are said to be very interested in a deal for Coutinho, regardless of whether or not current manager Maurizio Sarri stays at Stamford Bridge or not. Juventus are reportedly keen on hiring Sarri. The Italian tactician is set to make a statement in coming days. He has a year left with the club worth £5m. Sarri’s future has been uncertain for most of the season despite bringing the club to the Champions League and reaching the two cup finals. Max Allegri is set to leave Juventus after leading the club to an eighth straight title. The Italian club is happy to bring Sarri home and have reportedly offered him £6.2m-a-year for three years. However, no official statement has been released regarding this matter.
The Blues are banned from acquiring new players during the next two transfer windows, or until January 2020. It was reported that the club violated rules regarding the acquisition of Under-18 players. The Stamford Bridge club however vehemently denied the accusations and are prepared to make an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.