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"Chelsea are already exploring other options" - Fabrizio Romano suggests French international is on his way to Barcelona

Barcelona seem to have won the race for Kounde
Barcelona seem to have won the race for Kounde

Chelsea appear to have surrendered in the race with Barcelona to sign Sevilla defender Jules Kounde, as per transfer expert Fabrizio Romano.

Kounde, 23, has been a long-term target for the Blues and was seemingly headed to Stamford Bridge when an agreement with Sevilla was reportedly reached.

However, Barcelona have swooped in and seemingly won the race, with Romano claiming the Blues are turning their attention elsewhere.

Romano tweeted:

"Barcelona feelings, again in the same direction: Jules Koundé, considered ‘close’ - he wants the move. Chelsea are already exploring other options, as deal with Sevilla’s stalling since last week."

He added:

"Barça official bid expected soon, as personal terms are already agreed."
Barcelona feelings, again in the same direction: Jules Koundé, considered ‘close’ - he wants the move. Chelsea are already exploring other options, as deal with Sevilla’s stalling since last week. 🚨🇫🇷 #FCBBarça official bid expected soon, as personal terms are already agreed. https://t.co/HAmRo8HVGc

It has been the story of the summer for Chelsea with regards to Barcelona pouncing on their transfer targets.

The same scenario occurred when the Blues reportedly agreed a deal with Leeds United for Brazilian winger Raphinha (via The Express).

The 25-year-old waited for Barca to conjure up an offer that Leeds would find acceptable rather than head to Stamford Bridge.

It seems a similar saga has occurred with Kounde having agreed personal terms with Barcelona despite Chelsea having reached an agreement with Sevilla.

The French centre-back made 44 appearances for Julen Lopetegui's side last season and looks set to continue in La Liga with Barca.

The 23-year-old has grown into one of Europe's most admired centre-backs with eye-catching performances for Sevilla.

He has 11 international caps for France to his name and is expected to make the squad for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.


Chelsea seemingly miss out on another defender as Barcelona swoop for Jules Kounde

Jules Kounde seems to have rejected the Blues
Jules Kounde seems to have rejected the Blues

Chelsea have seemingly missed out on yet another target to Barca and their options for a second defensive signing are becoming limited.

Manchester City's Nathan Ake was a target but a potential deal for the Dutchman was called off (as per talkSPORT).

Ake, 27, had risen through the Blues' youth ranks and was expected to join City teammate Raheem Sterling at Stamford Bridge this summer.

Meanwhile, Matthijs de Ligt was a reported target for Thomas Tuchel's side as well. However, he joined Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich for £60.3 million on a five-year deal.

Chelsea are therefore now somewhat at a crossroads with regards to adding to the signing of centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly.

Koulibaly, 31, arrived at Stamford Bridge from Napoli in a £34.2 million deal, signing a four-year contract with the Blues.

Tuchel's side are still looking to finish replacing Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger, with the duo having departed following the expiration of their contracts.

The two centre-backs have joined Barca and Real Madrid respectively, leaving Tuchel in need of reinforcements.

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Edited by Aditya Singh
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