Chelsea are reportedly in advance talks with Brighton defender Marc Cucurella in the ongoing summer window.
With the summer window due to shut in less than a month, Chelsea a willing to pay around $61 million for the 24-year-old Cururella, Sky Sports reported. Cucurella has a contract with Brighton until 2026, giving the Seagulls leverage in the transfer fee negotiations.
Chelsea have agreed to personal terms with the Spanish defender as they have sped up their interest this week, according to Fabrizio Romano, who has a credible record in the European transfer market.
Initially, Cucurella was heavily linked with a move to Manchester City as the Etihad boss Pep Guardiola was seeing the Spaniard as a replacement for Oleksandr Zinchenko, who moved to Arsenal earlier this summer. However, the talks between Manchester City and Brighton ended after the Premier League champions refused to match the player’s asking price, according to Sports Mole.
Chelsea could include 19-year-old defender Levi Colwill as a part of Cucurella’s deal; however, there is no confirmation about the same, according to The Hard Tackle.
Thomas Tuchel has been desperate to bolster his defence ahead of the 2022-23 campaign, having lost some key defenders this summer, including Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen. The future of Marcos Alonso and Cesar Azpilicueta at Stamford Bridge is also not certain as yet.
After securing Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli, Chelsea have failed in their pursuits for Jules Kounde, Matthijs de Ligt and Nathan Ake, leaving the Blues to look for other options. Even though Cucurella is not of the same level as the said names, the Spanish left-back has certainly showed promising signs in his maiden season with Brighton.
In the summer of 2021, Cucurella moved from Getafe to Brighton on a five-year deal. At the end of the campaign in 2021-22, where he made 38 competitive appearances, the young defender claimed both Players’ Player and Supporters’ Player of the Year at the Albion’s official awards.
Chelsea, who finished the last term without a title, are scheduled to begin their 2022-23 Premier League season with a trip to Merseyside to take on Everton at Goodison Park on Saturday.