Chelsea target £30m PSG lynchpin to replace Nigerian midfielder

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Chelsea have been linked with a move for Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Blaise Matuidi, according to reports in Italy.

Tuttomercatoweb [via the Daily Star] state that Jose Mourinho has turned his attentions to the France international, who could be signed in January at the earliest opportunity.

The Mirror indicate that Matuidi could be a replacement for Paul Pogba, who been a long-term target for the Blues, but the pursuit of whom ultimately came to nothing during the summer.

The Daily Star report that Matuidi is being considered as a replacement for John Obi Mikel, who is understood to have come to the end of the road in West London.

The Nigeria international—who won the Africa Cup of Nations with the Super Eagles in 2013—had his 2014-15 campaign ravaged by injury. He began this season behind first-choice midfield pair Cesc Fabregas and Nemanja Matic in the pecking order, but was named to start in the match against Everton following the poor displays of his rivals.

That match ended in another heavy defeat for Chelsea, after which Mourinho opted to shuffle his pack once again, resigning Mikel to the bench.

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According to the Star, the Portuguese coach appears to have given up on the Nigerian, and is keen to purchase Matuidi, who would represent a considerable upgrade.

The tabloid report that it would take a bid of at least £30 million to snare 28-year-old Matuidi, who is under contract at PSG until 2018.

In contrast to Mikel’s peripheral role at Stamford Bridge, Matuidi was a key figure for PSG last season—making 34 league appearances as Laurent Blanc’s side lifted the French title.

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