Chelsea have reportedly contacted Inter Milan in order to secure a transfer for Arsenal and Napoli target Mauro Icardi.
Italian publication calciomercato have run an exclusive report stating that Chelsea have made first contact with Mauro Icardi’s current employers Inter Milan, over the possibility of bringing the Argentinian to Stamford Bridge. The report states that new Blues manager Antonio Conte is desperate to add some depth in the striker department even after signing Belgian forward Michu Batshuayi, due to the uncertainty looming over Diego Costa’s future at the club.
Negotiations with Everton for bringing Romelu Lukaku back to the club have drawn out for a long period without progress, much to the frustration of Chelsea, who have now reportedly identified the former Sampdoria striker as a possible signing.
Inter Milan have, thus far, remained firm on their stance of keeping their captain at the club by rejecting advances from Arsenal and Napoli. Arsenal were rumoured to be preparing a €35m plus Olivier Giroud offer for the Argentinian, but are yet to lodge an official bid. Napoli, meanwhile, have tabled two offers for the 23-year-old, one close to the €70m mark and the other reported to be €40m plus Italian striker Manolo Gabbiadini.
The Nerazzurri have had a managerial change since, with Roberto Mancini being replaced by former Ajax boss Frank De Boer and it would be interesting to see how the Dutchman sees the club captain’s possible sale. The player’s agent and wife, Wanda Nara, will meet with the Partenopei once again this week to seek an update on Icardi’s status after the managerial change, and a decision regarding a move is likely to take place after the meeting.
Napoli have a huge cash reserve after the sale of Gonzalo Higuain to Juventus and could match Premier League clubs, Arsenal and Chelsea in terms of fee and wages. The decision would hinge upon Mauro Icardi’s preference, on whether he wants to stay in Italy or move to England to test himself in the Premier League.
Ajax agree loan deal for Chelsea’s Bertrand Traore
Dutch newspaper Telegraaf have reported that Ajax have agreed a deal to bring Chelsea’s Bertrand Traore to the club on loan. The daily have reported that Ajax’s Director of football, Marc Overmars, has reached an agreement with Chelsea for the loan move of striker Bertrand Traore as a potential replacement for Swiss forward Milik, who has been reported to be close to a move to Napoli.
Ajax have appointed former Vitesse manager Peter Bosz to replace Frank De Boer, and the new boss has identified the Burkina Faso youngster as one of his priority signings. The 20-year-old tops the wishlist of Bosz, given that the player and coach worked well together during Traore’s loan spell at Vitesse. Telegraaf also reported that the player is in favour of a move to Netherlands, where he can expect regular first-team football and is happy to be leaving London for it.
Ajax were reported to have made Bertrand Traore their top target earlier this summer, but his performances in the pre-season have seen him earn praise from fans and pundits alike. He was tipped to stay at Chelsea and act as a cover for the starting trio of strikers at the club. Telegraaf, however, have now confirmed that Traore will be joining Ajax after the club agreed a loan deal with Chelsea, which further adds to the worries in terms of availability of strikers for the Blues. It also fuels speculation of Antonio Conte going after another striker to add to the squad before the summer window closes.