Speculation linking Chelsea with many of Europe’s most in-demand strikers continues. The Blues are now holding talks with Napoli to try and secure the signing of their Uruguayan striker Edinson Cavani, according to the Daily Mirror. The story claims that Cavani has risen to the top of new manger Jose Mourinho’s list of targets after Radamel Falcao joined Monaco and following Borussia Dortmund’s refusal to countenance the departure of Robert Lewandowski this summer.
Yet, Cavani looks set to be another forward that eludes Chelsea. Napoli are steadfastly refusing to negotiate for offers that fail to meet last season’s Serie A top scorer’s €63 million (£54m) buyout clause. That is a fee that Chelsea appear unwilling to pay, while Napoli are also reported to have rejected the Premier League side’s offers of sending players in part exchange. Also counting against Chelsea is Cavani’s comments in recent days that he would relish a move to Madrid. If talks with Napoli do not lead to a successful resolution, then Chelsea may well turn their attentions to Fiorentina forward Stevan Jovetic, although he is not the type of striker that Mourinho has used in his previous sides.
There has continued to be speculation that Chelsea are reigniting their interest in Brazilian wide forward Hulk. The powerful and pacey left-sided attacker was heavily linked with the Blues last summer and they have again been credited with an interest in recent weeks, along with big-spending Monaco. The 26-year-old’s agent has now suggested that his client could be poised to move after just a single season at Zenit St Petersburg.
"We can't announce anything at the moment, the player is focusing on the Confederations Cup and nothing will be made official during this period," Jose Caldeira said, according to Sky Sports. "France is a possibility, but there are others. Everything is possible."
Strengthening his midfield is likely to feature high on Mourinho’s list of priorities this summer. And the Daily Star claims that the Portuguese is determined to land former Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic. The Serbian left for Benfica two years ago and has been increasingly impressive since. He is not likely to come cheap, however, with the club Chelsea beat in the Europa League final apparently demanding £38 million for the 25-year-old. That could well be the end of the matter with Matic also recently declaring that he wanted to stay at Benfica for at least another season.
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Talk is also persisting that Mourinho is not a fan of Juan Mata and is looking to sell the attacking midfielder who was Chelsea’s Player of the Year last season. The Daily Mail believes that Chelsea could recoup £30 million for the Spain international and that Barcelona have made signing him a priority this summer.
Furthermore, there are claims that both Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich and Barcelona president Sandro Rosell have both been at the European Under-21 Championship in Israel, where the possibility of a deal for Mata has been discussed. It is thought that Mata does not fit into Mourinho’s style of play, although it would still be a bold move to sell a player revered by the fans at Stamford Bridge.