Chelsea transfer ‘progressing’ with £80m star ‘eager’ to join; City, Liverpool target an alternative

Jason Soutar
Reported Chelsea target Moises Caicedo during a match.

Chelsea are ‘progressing’ in their negotiations with Brighton for Ecuadorian midfielder Moises Caicedo, according to reports.

The Blues were interested in signing Caicedo in January but did not make an official bid for the 21-year-old, unlike Arsenal who offered to pay as much as £70million.

Brighton turned down two bids from the Gunners, who are still interested in the young midfielder, but are unlikely to make another bid after agreeing to pay £105m for West Ham’s Declan Rice.

He remains a top target for Chelsea, however, with Manchester United also keen.

Football Insider reported on Wednesday that Chelsea are hoping to reach an agreement for the £80m signing of Caicedo ‘this week’ as the player has already agreed personal terms with the Londoners.

And now, The Guardian say ‘progress’ is being made in their ‘pursuit’ of the Ecuadorian international.

Improving in midfield is one of new head coach Mauricio Pochettino’s top priorities this summer and he unsurprisingly views Caicedo as an ideal addition.

The 21-year-old is ‘eager’ to move to Stamford Bridge and Brighton will not stand in his way, as long as their asking price is met.

Transfer gossip: Man Utd agree to Chelsea Mount offer as Ten Hag eyes £45m midfield duo

£80m ‘could be enough’ to land Caicedo, though the Seagulls could try to tempt Chelsea into including defender Levi Colwill in the deal.

Colwill impressed under Roberto De Zerbi last term and the south coast club have already had a £30m bid for the young centre-back rejected by their Premier League rivals.

Pochettino is expected to give the English defender the chance to impress next season following Kalidou Koulibaly’s exit and Chelsea are determined to agree a new contract with the player.

Brighton could well persist on Colwill being included in the deal, which could see talks break down.

If the Blues fail to land Caicedo, they are also interested in Manchester City and Liverpool-linked Celta Vigo midfielder Gabri Veiga.

Outgoing transfers will be vitally important for Chelsea this summer. The clearout is well underway with several players expected to follow the likes of Edouard Mendy and Hakim Ziyech out the door.

The Mason Mount saga is also explained in the same report; as is the situation of Callum Hudson-Odoi, who is attracting interest from Fulham, AC Milan and Nottingham Forest.

Manchester United’s third bid for Mount was rejected by Chelsea, but it is said the £50m plus £5m in add-ons is still on the table.

With Chelsea keen to sell the England star, who is out of contract next year and does not want to extend, they could end up caving and accepting the bid.

Player sales are imperative for the Blues, who need to balance the books and trim the first-team squad after spending around £600m on players in less than a year.

READ MORE: All the Premier League completed transfers in the summer window of 2023