Chelsea will absolutely have to move on players this summer due to the enormous squad size that was compiled under new owner Todd Boehly. Additionally, new manager Mauricio Pochettino has inherited a squad that wasn’t designed to run his systems and play in his style.
He will no doubt bring in his players who can and will. In fact, he’s already made his first signing, at least on the youth level, via Kendry Paez. We cover him, Mason Mount and Diogo Costa in this edition of Chelsea FC Transfer Talk.
Mount has been linked with potential transfers to Manchester United and Liverpool FC, with the former said to be in pole position (We’ve covered this narrative, from a United perspective, here). However, the $75 million transfer fee that Chelsea are said to be demanding is holding up any potential deal. Mount had a down year, especially by his standards, and that leaves bargaining room for potentially interested clubs.
They also know that Chelsea needs to sell, as Mount is in the final year of his deal, so that provides additional leverage against Chelsea.
Although he’ll still command a very high price given.
A. United have a void in midfield to fill
B. There will be that English international premium, in the final price.
C. Overall, Mount is still a very valuable commodity. The Express has more on the current state of negotiations.
Getting back to Kendry Paez, the Ecuadorian midfielder moves over from Independiente del Valle, a club in his native land for €20m (£17.27m). Paez, who turned 16 last month, will move to Stamford Bridge after his 18th birthday, and join the club in the summer of 2025.
The club have already announced the signing, describing Paez as somebody who “already built a reputation in South America as one of the brightest and most creative young talents around, thanks to his combination of skillful dribbling along with the vision and technique to open up defenses with his passing.”
Chelsea Football Club has agreed a deal to sign teenage midfielder Kendry Paez from Independiente del Valle! ??
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) June 5, 2023
Finally, Portugal and Porto goalkeeper Diogo Costa responded to a media question about all the stories linking him to Manchester United and Chelsea: “That’s the internet. It is a happiness and an honour to play for my favourite club. What they say is what they say, there is nothing concrete, I have a contract until 2027 and I hope to continue, let’s see.”‘
Typical stock answers that players give in response to transfer rumors questions. That’s to be expected.
Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Sports Bank. He’s also the author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” and “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”
He’s written for numerous publications, including the New York Daily News, Sports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune. He regularly appears on NTD News and WGN News Now. Follow the website on Twitter and Instagram.