Chelsea got David Luiz on Transfer Deadline Day as Blues manager Antonio Conte was able to bolster his defensive ranks just in time.
Luiz was probably not Conte’s first choice, with The Express claiming that the Chelsea boss had eyes for Napoli centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly.
Everton were also interested in Koulibaly, per the source, but a deal could not be struck by either English club, despite Chelsea offering £42m for the 25-year-old.
The Express report that Chelsea were prepared to quadruple Koulibaly’s £16,000-a-week wages, but the player is now about to settle for new Napoli terms of just £33,000, which – despite being a tidy rise of 106.25% – is far less than he was set to land in London.
According to Italian outlet Sport Mediaset, Koulibaly’s new contract will include a release clause of £76m.
So, at least Chelsea now know that Koulibaly is available, albeit at a price that would make him the most expensive defender of all time.