Matthijs de Ligt is a genuine target for Chelsea this summer as Thomas Tuchel looks to replace Antonio Rudiger.
London that while nothing is advanced yet regarding a move for the Juventus defender, there is a strong interest from the Blues’ side.
De Ligt, who signed for Juve in 2019 from Ajax for around £77million, has just two years remaining on his contract with the Italians.
Reports from Italy suggest that the Serie A club wants to keep hold of the 22-year-old defender, but he is assessing his options this summer.
Juventus are currently in talks with the Netherlands international about his future and the possibility of extending his contract.
That has not put Chelsea off who are on the hunt for at least two centre-backs this summer following Rudiger and Andreas Christensen both leaving the club on free transfers.
Jules Kounde has been identified as Chelsea’s first-choice target, with personal terms already agreed with the Sevilla defender.
De Ligt is one of many names on the shortlist to also come in, with football.
“Speaking earlier in the month, De Ligt addressed his future to the press while on international duty with Holland. He said:”There are ongoing conversations between me and Juventus.
“Ending fourth in a row for two years in a row is not good enough. Juventus know this. So, being Juventus, we have to make steps. I’m a Juventus player, so I’m focused on that.”
If De Ligt was to come in, then Tuchel might plan to play him on the left-hand side of the back-three.
The Dutchman has played that role many times for his country and excelled.
What could also attract Tuchel to De Ligt is his ambition and drive.
Speaking to Sky Italia – via One Football – last year, De Ligt revealed his plans to one day wear the captain’s armband at Juventus, something he would hope could also become a reality should he secure a move to Chelsea this summer.
“It’s an honour for me to play at Juventus, and I’d love to think that one day I could become captain of this side,” he said.
“That’s not important right now, seeing as there are already four captains in the squad who have been playing here for years.”
Chelsea could be looking for a new captain very soon.
Club captain Cesar Azpilicueta could leave Stamford Bridge this summer with 12 months remaining on his contract.
The Italy international, like Azpilicueta, has a year remaining on his contract and could be sold this summer to protect his value.
The Brazilian defender signed a one-year contract extension earlier in 2022, but there is no guarantee that he will play beyond the 2022/23 season.