Chelsea are reportedly in talks with Napoli over a possible €50 million deal to land Elseid Hysaj from Napoli for the January transfer window.
According to a report by Italian outlet Calciomercato, Chelsea and Napoli have held multiple talks over the transfer of Elseid Hysaj.
The Premier League heavyweights are eager to land the world-class Albanian defender, who has a release clause worth €50 million, in the January transfer window.
Hysaj has made steady progress since joining Napoli from Empoli in the summer of 2015. In fact, the Albanian international was a key figure under the tutelage of Maurizio Sarri, as the Partenopei established themselves as genuine Serie A title contenders.
Now, with Sarri at Chelsea, speculation over the player’s future has grown in recent months, even though he has remained a defensive mainstay at Napoli.
The Blues had, in fact, been interested in signing the 24-year-old in the summer as well, only to withdraw their interest due to a gentlemen’s agreement in the aftermath of the Jorginho transfer.
However, there are no such hurdles for Chelsea, should they wish to pursue Napoli superstars. And, the Blues are set to launch the offensive for Hysaj in the January transfer window, with impending sanctions over deals for underage players – possibly a transfer ban – forcing them to consider big moves for the winter.
The interest in Hysaj though, is somewhat perplexing, considering Cesar Azpilicueta has been one of the most reliable players for the Premier League heavyweights in recent seasons.
The Spaniard is unlikely to leave Chelsea either, having signed a new four-year deal earlier this week.
Davide Zappacosta though, is being heavily linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge in search of more regular game time.
Should the Italian leave, Chelsea will need to sign a top class replacement, making Hysaj a viable target, who would likely share minutes with Azpilicueta.
Either way, it looks like the Blues are set to make their move for Hysaj, whose agent refused to rule out a January switch to Chelsea recently.
“I can’t rule out resuming negotiations with Chelsea in January. We know there was contact in the summer because Sarri wanted him, and we also know that [Davide] Zappacosta is not to the liking of the coach. We’ll see how it goes, anything could happen.”
As per the report, Chelsea are already in talks with Napoli and the player over a possible move, although they are unwilling to shell out €50 million to pay off his release clause.
Napoli president Aurelio de Laurentiis, being the gritty negotiator that he is, should ask for the entirety of the clause, which poses a problem for the Blues.
The availability of a release clause does take Hysaj’s future out of Napoli’s hands. It now remains to be seen if Chelsea are willing to fork out the entire amount, or if they can negotiate an agreeable figure. The talks though, signify that a move for the world-class defender could be in the offing in the winter.