Chelsea demand ‘ridiculous’ sum from Real Madrid as Pochettino sets Blues up for future

Ciaran McCarthy
Reece James, Ben Chilwell, Chelsea, August 2022
Reece James and Ben Chilwell in conversation before game

Chelsea will reportedly only allow Reece James to move to Real Madrid if they receive a ‘ridiculous offer’, as Mauricio Pochettino wants to build his side around the star.

On his day, James is one of the Blues’ very best players. It’s no surprise they slapped the captain’s armband on him, aware that the 23-year-old is the future of the side, and the right man to take them forward.

For the time being, he’ll be trying his best to do that, but he could be tempted by a move elsewhere. Real Madrid have been linked with him for a while, and Glen Johnson believes those links will cause his eyes to wander, and prompt a “tough decision”.

A subsequent report on Real’s interest suggested they’re looking to pay £40million for James.

Such a measly fee would surely be an insult to Chelsea and the star, whose performances over the past few seasons have shown that he’s likely worth a lot more.

The Blues, Pochettino especially, are aware of that. Football Insider reports ‘it would take a ridiculous offer’ for them to allow James to leave for Real, or anybody else.

No actual figure is mentioned, but one can imagine the type of sum Chelsea would be looking for in order to allow one of the best players in the Premier League to leave for a European powerhouse, especially given he’s a year into a six-year deal.

Pochettino’s desire to keep James under lock and key stems from his desire to ‘build the side around’ the right-back – unsurprising given he’s 23 and is already such a good player, and a leader of the side.

It remains to be seen whether Real will chance their arm with the sort of offer they expect Chelsea would accept. It’s unclear if they’d be able to afford it, or if anybody would.

There’s every chance given the context behind James’ time at Stamford Bridge that nobody has the money to take him on board, especially so early in a lengthy contract.

If he continues to perform at a high level upon his return from injury, his price tag could rise even higher, and Real could be out of luck.

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