Chelsea are reportedly contemplating making a move for Bayer Leverkusen wing-back Jeremie Frimpong with Reece James’ injury problems refusing to go away.
James is set to miss a few weeks after suffering a hamstring injury in training in between Chelsea’s Premier League opener against Liverpool and second fixture at West Ham.
Being sidelined is becoming an all too familiar situation for the England right-back, who has missed 28 games since the beginning of last season.
These constant injuries are really holding back a player who ought to be regarded as the best right-back in the Premier League.
It is obviously a big blow for the Blues – who recently named James as their new captain – as well.
Malo Gusto has deputised for James and he provided two assists in Chelsea’s 3-0 win over Luton Town on Friday.
However, it appears that Mauricio Pochettino is looking to spend even more money, this time on another right-back.
Gusto was obviously signed as depth for James and that addition was justified less than two weeks into the season, so to see Frimpong linked with a transfer to Stamford Bridge is quite surprising.
On top of that, Leverkusen are expected to ask for a huge transfer fee, especially with the summer transfer window closing this week.
Anyway, it has been claimed by Fichajes – a Spanish outlet reporting on a Dutch player leaving a German side for an English one – that Frimpong is on Pochettino’s transfer wishlist.
It is believed that the former Celtic defender is a ‘new target’ for Chelsea as they have ‘been affected’ by James’ injury problems.
Frimpong ‘has emerged as an intriguing option’ after Pochettino and his recruitment staff started ‘looking for alternatives’ following James’ most recent setback.
The report says the Dutch international is a ‘versatile’ option who would fit in ‘perfectly’ under Pochettino.
Unfortunately for Chelsea, Leverkusen are understandably ‘reluctant’ to sell and would require a ‘substantial’ fee to consider doing so.
It is noted that Frimpong’s development in Germany has ‘aroused the interest of several European teams’.
Manchester United have been strongly linked with the 22-year-old for a while now with Erik ten Hag believed to be a big fan of his compatriot.
Frimpong would be an ideal signing for the Red Devils amid uncertainty in the right-back position. Aaron Wan-Bissaka has improved but is definitely a player who can be replaced by someone better.
Before the transfer window opened there seemed to be expectation that United would bid for Frimpong but they decided to pursue other targets in Mason Mount, Andre Onana and Rasmus Hojlund.
If Frimpong is still at Leverkusen at the end of this season, he will definitely be one to watch next summer.