Chelsea are set to be rivalled by AC Milan in their pursuit of the highly rated Atalanta right-back Andrea Conti, as per reports.

Italian publication Calciomercato have reported that AC Milan are set to join Chelsea in pursuit of the Atalanta right-back Andrea Conti when the summer transfer window opens in June. Inter Milan and Napoli are also in the fray for the highly rated Italian defender.

Andrea Conti is a 22-year-old right-back who came up through the academy ranks at Atalanta before establishing himself in the club’s first team setup. The current campaign has been the breakthrough season for the youngster, as he has managed to carve out a regular place for himself in the starting eleven.

In fact, Conti has missed just three Serie A games all season for Atalanta, but has been preferred as a right midfielder by Gian Piero Gasperini. The 22-year-old, though, has made a mark with his defensive tenacity while also being a handy contributor in attack, with 3 goals and 3 assists in the Italian top flight.

But, what has really caught the eye is Conti’s versatility to play in different positions, something that appeals to Chelsea boss Antonio Conte. The young Italian does seem like a natural fit for the right wing-back slot.

Andrea Conti has impressed many in Europe with his performances for Atalanta. (Photo courtesy - Mario Carlini/ Iguana Press/Getty Images)
Andrea Conti has impressed many in Europe with his performances for Atalanta. (Photo courtesy – Mario Carlini/ Iguana Press/Getty Images)

There is a dearth of options in that department, with Victor Moses being the only senior player available for the slot. That is where Conti comes in, with a possible addition to the Blues’ ranks sure to bolster Conte’s options for the right wing-back position.

But, Chelsea are not alone in their pursuit of Conti, with Milan now entering the picture to sign the defender. The Rossoneri have been battling mediocrity for a few seasons now, and are in the middle of being acquired by a Chinese group that has lofty ambitions for the Italian giants.

A squad rebuilding is in the offing and, according to the report, Milan are eyeing young, highly-rated Italian players. Milan have established contacts with the parties involved to ascertain if they can add Conti to the squad, but are also set to be joined by Serie A rivals Napoli and Inter Milan for the youngster.

Inter, themselves, are plotting a squad overhaul in the summer with the Suning group aiming to get the Nerazzurri back to contesting for silverware. Napoli, on the other hand, have obtained a priority channel with Atalanta and are monitoring Conti as the foil to Elseid Hysaj.

So, it looks highly likely that La Dea will find it tough to retain the services of the highly rated Conti in the summer, with Chelsea, AC Milan, Inter Milan and Napoli all interested in the 22-year-old. A price of €15 million has been reported previously, and it now remains to be seen where Conti heads off to in the summer.

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