Chelsea risk prolonging Roman Abramovich long-term plan with January transfer target


    It would be typical of Abramovich to break the bank to sign Rice, who perhaps would still qualify as an academy player for the Chelsea owner due to his history in the ranks, but with The Blues rumoured to go back in for Kounde in January, future moves may be delayed.

    Chelsea originally thought they had agreed a deal in principle with Sevilla for around £50m for Kounde, but after they smashed their initial bid to sign Lukaku from Inter, the Spanish side increased their asking price in the hopes that Abramovich would repeat his actions.

    Sevilla have now said that any side must pay Kounde’s £68m release clause, and Chelsea may be forced to trigger this in January with uncertainty growing over the future of Antonio Rudiger, as well as the sale of Kurt Zouma.

    Chelsea sold Zouma to raise funds for the Kounde deal, which never ended up happening, and The Blues are in talks over new deals for Andreas Christensen and Rudiger.

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