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Chelsea transfer news: Blues exploring deal for Juventus centre-back Matthijs de Ligt

Matthijs de Ligt
(Image credit: PA)

Chelsea are weighing up a shock move for Juventus centre-back Matthijs de Ligt, according to reports.

The Blues are on the verge of re-signing their former striker Romelu Lukaku, who will move to Stamford Bridge from Inter (opens in new tab).

Thomas Tuchel made the acquisition of a centre-forward his priority going into the summer, and he is now set to turn his attention to recruiting a new centre-back.

Jules Kounde of Sevilla (opens in new tab) has been heavily linked with a move to west London in recent weeks.

Chelsea (opens in new tab) are thought to be exploring other options, though, and one of them is rumoured to be De Ligt.

According to Calcio Mercato (opens in new tab), the European champions have identified the Netherlands international as the ideal long-term successor to Thiago Silva.

The Brazilian signed a one-year contract extension with Chelsea in June, but he turns 37 next month and could be about to enter his final season at a major European club.

The Italian publication states that Chelsea are readying a bid for De Ligt worth £51m plus Timo Werner, who could be pushed down the pecking order once Lukaku returns for a second spell at Stamford Bridge.

However, the report also asserts that the Blues will have major difficulties prising the Dutchman away from the Allianz Stadium.

Juventus (opens in new tab) consider De Ligt to be 'unsellable' and are determined to keep hold of him.

The defender has a contract until 2024 and is considered to be a key part of the club's long-term plans.

It certainly would not make much sense for Juventus to sell De Ligt, whom they signed for £67.7m just two years ago.

Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini showcased their enduring quality at the European Championship, but both players are nearer the end of their careers than the start.

It would surely take an offer bigger than £51m plus Werner to get De Ligt out of Juventus.

This feels like a transfer story that will fade from view rather quickly.

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