Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho doesn’t need three more weeks to realize his side is in need of backline reinforcements, and the Blues continue their search for quality defenders with the start of Premier League getting underway on Saturday.
Mourinho and Stamford Bridge officials are still holding out hope, with the promise of an inflated fee for Everton’s John Stones, but are also targeting two equally young and promising stars.
Daily Telegraph reports Everton are becoming “concerned” over their ability to keep the 21-year-old Stones with Chelsea preparing a £30 million bid for the defender. Manager Roberto Martinez has largely fought off the Blues overtures for the rising star, but Chelsea’s latest projected bid could be too much for Toffees brass to turn down.
This would be Chelsea’s third bid for Stones, following £20 million and £26 million offers over the last few weeks, and they could go as high as £34 million.
Telegraph alluded to Everton’s pursuits of Manchester United’s Jonny Evans, Swansea’s Ashley Williams, and Celtic’s Virgil van Dijk, perhaps hinting Everton will be more comfortable letting Stones go when a deal for his replacement is confirmed.
Several reports have pegged Stones as John Terry’s heir should he join Chelsea, and there doesn't appear to be another bidder for Stones' services. Mourinho has insisted on the Blues' need for more defensive bodies, as they hope to become the first team to repeat as Premier League champions in seven years.
Unlike with Everton, Chelsea received encouragement in their attempts to land Augsburg left-back Baba Rahman. Sky Sports reports the 21-year-old Ghana international has agreed to join Chelsea and now the two sides must come to terms on a confirmed fee.
Already a tackling savant, Rahman’s efficient play helped Augsburg finish in fifth place in Bundesliga last term. Rahman has been lauded for his passing skills and received praise from former Liverpool star and current Bayern Munich holding midfielder Xabi Alonso.
Chelsea may face a much more difficult battle for Cagliari defensive midfielder Godfred Donsah, according to Express. The Serie B side’s president Tommaso Giulini told reporters of discussions with Chelsea and Juventus over Donsah, but insisted the 19-year-old won’t be moved.
Giulini did suggest that a contract dispute could be at the heart of Donsah’s transfer speculation.
“We had a chat a few weeks ago with Juventus and Chelsea, but I am stunned by all these rumours around him. The lad needs to grow up with us," Giulini said. “We have many other players on low wages and their contracts will be renewed at the right time, including Donsah’s.
“We received a request to attend a meeting via a lawyer, but I am accustomed to doing things a different way. As soon as the right moment comes, we’ll be happy to renew his contract.”
Donsah is under contract until 2020, which is likely why Juve tried to pair striker Alberto Cerri with a fee in order to sweeten the deal for Cagliari. Thus far, it doesn’t appear likely Chelsea are willing to include another player, but Donsah’s market value is currently a smidge under £4 million, an amount the Blues are probably willing to offer.