Chelsea could have a chance to sign Inter Milan striker Mauro Icardi unchallenged with latest reports suggesting Real Madrid could try a transfer for Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez instead.
The Chile international is set to be out of contract at the Emirates Stadium in the summer, and Don Balon claim Real are confident this means they could land him for as little as £26million this January.
The Spanish source states that Madrid are looking at Sanchez as a cheap alternative to top target Icardi, whom the Sun have also recently linked with Chelsea in a potential £100million move.
The Blues may now feel they’ll be in a stronger position to sign the Argentina international this winter if Real focus their attention elsewhere.
With Diego Costa leaving for Atletico Madrid, there has been a lot of pressure on Alvaro Morata to lead the line for Antonio Conte’s side, who have not looked as strong as they did last season.
Chelsea look out of the title race already and also face a likely stern test in the next phase of the Champions League after only finishing as runner-up in their group.
Icardi’s tremendous form so far this season could see him become a valuable asset for an elite club like Chelsea or Real, with the 24-year-old scoring an incredible 16 goals in 16 Serie A matches in 2017/18.
It makes sense, however, that Real believe Sanchez is a more realistic target, with the 28-year-old a sensible sale from Arsenal if they do let him go in the middle of the season, as it could prevent him joining rivals Manchester City.
Don Balon also recently claimed City looked like striking a January deal for Sanchez for around £44million this January.