Chelsea have reportedly made a late bid to sign Zenit St Petersburg midfielder Axel Witsel, a target for both Liverpool and Everton.
The 27-year-old is currently on holiday after featuring for Belgium at Euro 2016, but will look to clear up his club future sooner rather than later.
Having been linked with various clubs in recent years, it had appeared as though a switch to Merseyside was in the offing this summer.
However, according to The Mirror, Chelsea are ready to swoop and snap up the midfielder to add him to Antonio Conte’s squad ahead of next season.
Talks have reportedly stalled between Witsel and Liverpool and Everton, although it had been the Toffees who were the more heavily linked side with Ronaldo Koeman holding ambitious plans for their future after arriving at Goodison Park last month.
Nevertheless, while they have been unable to wrap up a deal, The Mirror claim that Chelsea have made their move and believe that a switch to London rather than the north-west could play an important part in influencing Witsel’s final decision.
The Belgian ace has proven his ability over an extended period of time, and has been linked with making that next step up in terms of his club for a while.
Moving to the Premier League would seem like a natural progression in his career, but it remains to be seen whether it’s Everton or Chelsea that he’s playing for next season.
Conte has missed out on several of his top targets already this summer as he prepares to officially begin work at Stamford Bridge next week.
In turn, he has been forced to consider his options and look at other players, and he will hope that he can finally land a top midfielder to form an integral part of his plans in his first campaign in England.