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Chelsea suffer transfer blow in bid to sign £71m star as Italian giants enter talks

Chelsea have reportedly slipped down the pecking order to sign Real Madrid playmaker James Rodriguez this summer, with Inter in talks over a deal.

The Colombian international has struggled to establish himself as a regular starter under Zinedine Zidane, and in turn it has led to endless speculation over his future.

As per The Sun, via Football Italia, both Chelsea and Manchester United have been linked with a move for the former Monaco and Porto star, but Inter have seemingly pushed their way to the front of the queue after talks were held on Friday.

It’s claimed that Suning group majority shareholder Zhang Jindong, part of the owners of the Nerazzurri, met with Real Madrid president Florentino Perez to discuss a deal.

The report goes on to suggest that the Serie A side want to form an alliance of sort between the two clubs moving forward, and it all starts with the potential signing of Rodriguez.

For his part, the 25-year-old has insisted that he wishes to stay, as despite not always being in favour with Zidane, he has still managed to contribute four goals and 10 assists in 21 appearances in all competitions.

Nevertheless, a player of his ability should be playing more often and being more decisive, and that in turn is the reason as to why he continues to be linked with an exit.

As reported by BBC Sport, Rodriguez joined Los Blancos in 2014 in a deal that could be worth up to £71m, and so it’s not going to be an easy decision for the Spanish giants to sell him just three years later having failed to have the desired impact at the Bernabeu.

Inter are ready to take advantage of a situation in which he is sold, although Antonio Conte will likely have a close eye on matters because as mentioned above, the Premier League leaders have been linked with an interest in Rodriguez and will be looking to bolster their squad ahead of next season with the return of Champions League football to their schedule.

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