Chelsea have more or less agreed a 55m fee with Sevilla and already have personal terms sorted with the defender. It all seemed like the defender was on his way to Stamford Bridge but Barcelona decided to make a late push for the player and the saga has taken a different twist.
The Blues must hate Barcelona at this point, after the Spanish giants already beat them to the signing of Raphinha in the current window. The latest indications hint that the same could yet happen with Kounde, with the Catalan giants now firmly in the running for the Sevilla man.
Barcelona are in talks with Kounde over personal terms and the latest sources claim that the Frenchman is eager to move to the La Liga giants and weigh all of the options at his disposal before making a final decision on his future.
Chelsea are not ready to lose on all fronts and a recent report now claims that the Premier League side could start exploring other options if they fail to see any breakthrough in their latest pursuit.
While Barcelona are reportedly edging closer to a deal, Chelsea are the only club with an agreement with both Sevilla and Kounde. However, the fact that the transfer has somewhat stalled is suddenly starting to give them cold feet.
After losing Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen to Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively, Chelsea were looking to sign three defenders this summer. The plan was that Kounde, Kalidou Koulibaly and one other defender will join this summer. The latter has already joined in the current window but potential disappointment in the form of Kounde means Chelsea might now be in search of two more defenders instead.
Among those to have been considered Villarreal’s Pau Torres, Villarreal’s Pau Torres, RB Leipzig’s Josko Gvardiol, Inter’s Milan Skriniar and Bayern Munich duo Benjamin Pavard and Dayot Upamecano.
The Blues have also reached out to RB Leipzig over a deal for Nordi Mukiele, but he has already put pen to paper on terms with Paris Saint-Germain and could now complete his switch to Parc des Princes imminently.
It is back to the drawing board for Chelsea and Thomas Tuchel, as the Blues must now decide whether they want to keep pushing for Kounde or turn their attentions to a new target. The next couple of days will provide clarity but Barcelona are now growing confident about beating the Premier League outfit to another top signing.