Chelsea will reportedly have to fork out £50m in January if they wish to sign talented AC Milan centre-half Alessio Romagnoli.
The 21-year-old has impressed since moving to the San Siro last summer, establishing himself as a mainstay in the Milan line-up and emerging as one of the top prospects in world football.
Coupled with Chelsea’s defensive issues despite the signings of David Luiz and Marcos Alonso ahead of the summer transfer deadline, The Sun claim that the Premier League giants will rekindle their interest after having a £35m bid rejected in August.
Romagnoli made 33 Serie A appearances last season and although there is still plenty of room for improvement in his game, he has shown plenty to warrant interest from the likes of Chelsea.
Antonio Conte’s side have conceded nine goals in seven Premier League games so far this season, the second worst defensive record out of the top 10 teams.
As a result, it’s no surprise that the Italian tactician continues to look for ways to strengthen his backline, with long-term options needed given the likes of John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic will need replacing sooner rather than later.
However, Romagnoli is undoubtedly seen as a key piece of Vincenzo Montella’s side for many years to come, and so Milan are unlikely to be interested in discussing a sale as they have a promising young Italian nucleus in their current squad.
Along with the likes of Gianluigi Donnarumma, Manuel Locatelli and Davide Calabria, Romagnoli is seen as a symbol of the club’s future and will be difficult to prise away from the Rossoneri.
Nevertheless, should they receive a bid around the reported £50m mark, it may well test their resolve as Chelsea push to sign the Italian international.