Chelsea will go head-to-head with Bayern Munich to sign Lazio centre-back Stefan de Vrij after he told his side that he wants to leave, report The Sun.
The Sun report that Chelsea are in the hunt for a new centre-back ahead of the upcoming transfer window, but it is difficult to see why.
Antonio Conte’s side have conceded just two goals in their previous 12 Premier League games, all of which they have won. During that period, they have kept ten clean sheets and opened up a six-point lead at the top of the table. The switch to a back-three appears to have been a masterstroke from Conte, and all of Cesar Azpilicueta, David Luiz and Gary Cahill appear to be un-droppable. He also has veteran John Terry and the promising Kurt Zouma in reserve.
That does not appear to have stopped the Blues from searching for defensive reinforcements. The Sun report that they are interested in signing Lazio’s de Vrij, and will challenge Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich in the race for his signature. The tabloid report that the Dutchman has told Lazio that he wants to leave, and cite Il Tempo in claiming that Chelsea are favourites to sign him.
Chelsea have a history of stockpiling Europe’s top talent, so it will come as no surprise to see de Vrij make the switch to Stamford Bridge next month. The Sun earlier reported that Lazio had placed a £30 million price-tag on his head, it remains to be seen whether Chelsea would be willing to meet that asking price.