Chelsea are closing in on the signing of Zenit Saint Petersburg midfielder, Axel Witsel after it appeared club owner, Roman Abrahamovich has intervened in order to convince the player.
As per Metro, several European heavyweights have been linked with the 26-year old who helped propel Zenit to the top of the table last term, with AC Milan leading the chase. Now it looks as though Chelsea will be Witsel’s next destination.
The report also says Russian billionaire, Abrahamovich, will utilise his personal relationship with Zenit president Alexander Dyukov Valeyervich to a good extent, in order to make sure Witsel joins the Blues.
The Belgian is valued at around £24 million and that should not be a problem for Chelsea given their recent domestic success and the lucrative deal with Yohohama Tyres.
Should Witsel move to Stamford Bridge, a couple of midfield exits will have to happen, with Obi Mikel and Oscar set to leave this summer. Juventus boss, Massimiliano Allegri is known to be a keen admirer of Oscar, and reportedly wants him as Vidal’s Bayern move gathers pace.
Cesc Fabregas is often deployed in a more withdrawn role by Mourinho, giving Oscar to operate as the club’s No.10. Witsel’s arrival will now mean Fabregas would be allowed to play more in the attacking No.10 role, leaving Witsel as Matic’s central midfield partner.
Witsel was also an initial target for Man United, but the club has moved to seal the signings of Bastian Schweinsteiger and Morgan Scheiderlin instead. This leaves only Chelsea and Milan as the only candidates for the ex-Benfica star.
Witsel is, as per Sport Mole, keen to move to England ahead of Euro 2016.
Meanwhile, Chelsea’s Juan Cuadrado is also on his way out of the club for Juventus this summer, with reports from various sources adding weight to the possibility of this exit by claiming the Blues want to sign Atletico’s Antoine Griezmann and Barcelona’s Pedro Rodriguez.