Chelsea open talks with new defensive target as planned raid of Serie A continues

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Chelsea will reportedly open talks for Roma defender Antonio Rudiger, who is currently on loan in the Italian capital from Stuttgart.

According to La Repubblica, as noted by Football Italia, a meeting is scheduled for Wednesday for the two clubs to carry out preliminary talks over a deal to take the 23-year-old German international to Stamford Bridge in the summer.

Rudiger is currently on loan with the Giallorossi, who have an option to sign him for €9m at the end of the season. The paper believes that Roma will exercise that option, but with a view of then going on to negotiate terms with Chelsea over a €20m sale.

Naturally, Stuttgart serve to lose out in this deal, but it remains to be seen whether or not Luciano Spalletti would consider losing the central defender who has continued to improve and develop so far this season.

As for Chelsea, incoming boss Antonio Conte will have to prioritise his defence with John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic facing uncertain futures.

While Terry’s contract with the Premier League outfit will expire in the summer, Ivanovic has been linked with an exit, with Roma a potential destination, as reported by ESPN FC.

That deal involves an exchange for combative midfielder Radja Nainggolan, but again, it is open for debate as to whether Roma would be open to listening to offers for the Belgian international who has informed the club that he has no desire to leave.

Conte will arrive at Stamford Bridge after Euro 2016 when his contract with the FIGC expires, and on the face of it, it looks as though the former Juventus boss will have a busy summer ahead.

Having been linked with various names around Europe over the last month, it remains to be seen who he actually targets, and who he is able to bring in and bolster his squad with ahead of his first season in charge in the Premier League.

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