Crystal Palace winger Michael Olise has a “slight preference” for Chelsea as the Blues battle Manchester City for the 21-year-old’s signature, according to RMC Sport.
The French radio station claim that Mauricio Pochettino’s side already have an “agreement in principle” with the player in regards to personal terms but a deal is still quite far from being finalised.
Olise does have a £35m release clause which the Blues could trigger at any time but there is uncertainty around the winger’s fitness situation.
The Frenchman tore his hamstring whilst playing at the European Under 21 Championships in June and he is expected to miss the start of the Premier League season.
Chelsea may have to reconsider their bid for Olise if it becomes clear that he will be sidelined for a number of months.
Why are Chelsea pursuing Olise?
On the face of it, the Blues are not exactly short of wingers. In addition to the likes of Raheem Sterling, Noni Madueke and Mykhailo Mudryk, both Hakim Ziyech and Callum Hudson-Odoi remain at the club.
However, with the latter two expected to leave Stamford Bridge before the end of the month, adding reinforcements out wide does make sense.
A number of signings could still be made before the transfer deadline
In addition to Olise, Pochettino has asked for more experience in midfield to be brought. That would suggest that another player will be targeted, in addition to Moises Caicedo in the middle of the pitch.
A move for a striker cannot be ruled out either, especially if Armando Broja leaves but, at the moment, it is not thought that Juventus’s Dusan Vlahovic will be the one signed. Pochettino is said to be unconvinced about the Serbian’s abilities so any potential swap deal involving him and Romelu Lukaku looks unlikely at this stage.