Serie A leaders keen to strengthen with Belgian starlet.
Roma will try their luck with a loan bid for out-of-favour Chelsea youngster Kevin De Bruyne this January, CaughtOffside understands.
Rudi Garcia’s side have enjoyed a surprisingly strong start to the season, and lead Serie A after winning all five of their opening games, though they are still somewhat under-strength after selling some key players over the summer.
The Italian giants lost the likes of Marquinhos, Erik Lamela and Pablo Osvaldo, whilst bringing in Kevin Strootman, Gervinho and Adem Ljajic, though they also made a late attempt to loan another of Chelsea’s squad players, failing in an attempt to land Demba Ba from the Blues.
De Bruyne could be next on their list as they hope to maintain their challenge for the title, and the young Belgian could be an ideal replacement for the loss of Lamela, who joined Tottenham in a £30m deal during the transfer window.
The 22-year-old is a highly rated prospect, and impressed a great deal last season in a loan spell in the Bundesliga with Werder Bremen, though he has not managed to break past the vast competition for places in Chelsea’s star-studded squad this year.
Although manager Jose Mourinho hinted that De Bruyne would be part of his plans, the Portuguese coach has moved to sign the likes of Andre Schurrle and Willian to bolster his options in that area of the pitch, meaning De Bruyne could be looking for a temporary move away from Stamford Bridge again for the second half of the season.
The Belgian had attracted a great deal of interest from other Bundesliga clubs in the summer, with Bayer Leverkusen hoping to secure him as part of the deal that saw Schurrle move to Chelsea, though with no success.
Another unsettled member of Chelsea’s squad in that position is Juan Mata, who could also be set for a January exit from the club after falling out of favour with Mourinho this season. The Spanish international also has admirers in Serie A, with Juventus and Napoli possibly ready to compete for his signature when the transfer window re-opens.
Mata’s exit may hinder Roma’s chances of landing De Bruyne, as Chelsea won’t want to lose two players in that position in quick succession, though the Stadio Olimpico side may try to help push through a deal by paying a small loan fee to the Blues for the talented attacker.