EPL Transfer Rumour: Chelsea stumble in pursuit of Radja Nainggolan
Belgian midfielder Radja Nainggolan has been strongly linked with a move to Chelsea, since the appointment of Antonio Conte as the next Blues manager. In fact, AS Roma’s director of football, Walter Sabatini, was spotted at Stamford Bridge over a month ago, which only confirmed what has been reported in the Italian media.
However, Chelsea are yet to reach an agreement for Nainggolan and it appears talks have stalled between both the clubs. Negotiations have also been difficult because the player hasn’t pushed for a move away from Rome, and has instead admitted several times in the media that he is quite happy at the Serie A club.
That, obviously, has made it more difficult for Chelsea, as the player doesn’t seem to be too keen on a move till now, but it seems things have changed off a sudden after the midfielder revealed to Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport he has received ‘ an important offer from Chelsea’ and that it ‘can’t be avoided’.
"My wishes have always been declared openly. I’m fine in Rome, I like Rome, that's where I see myself. On the other hand, an offer from Chelsea is important, you can’t just avoid it, and have to take it into consideration. I have already stated my preferences, now we must see if the clubs will do their part," he told Gazzetta dello Sport.
Those comments appear to be very confusing, and you’d think the player can’t make up his mind, or he is trying to force AS Rome to give him a new deal. The player is currently preparing for the Euros, and it’s very unlikely he’d want to push for a move in the middle of an important tournament.
Last night, Italian journalist Gianluca di Marzio reported Chelsea had a bid of €32m plus €3m in bonuses rejected for the Belgian, as AS Roma and Nainggolan are keen on continuing their relationship.
It’d be interesting to see if Chelsea return with a bid for the 28-year-old, or move to other targets. Antonio Conte is said to be a big fan of Nainggolan, and even tried signing at Juventus, and it remains to be see if he gets his wish this time.
Nainggolan was also asked about the injured Belgian national team and Manchester City skipper Vincent Kompany, and if the team can cope up in his absence, to which he replied: ”I do not agree. Kompany is an important player, but we can find a solution.
“We have so many good players, Alderweireld and Vertonghen are playing well. Denayer is young, but he is a great prospect and I am sure he’ll will become a great defender. The solutions are short and we are experimenting with different possibilities.”
Belgium play their first game in the European Championship against Italy on June 14, and a good tournament for Radja Nainggolan will only increase his value, so Chelsea much act quickly.