Wednesday 13 December 2017

Chelsea transfer news: Antonio Conte wants £60m Virgil van Dijk as Diego Costa is linked with China move

Virgil van Dijk
Virgil van Dijk

Jack Austin

Antonio Conte will rival Manchester City in the chase for Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk, with Chelsea willing to part with £60m for the Dutchman.

The Blues are hoping that amount of money – a club record – will be enough to persuade the Saints to part with their centre-back this month, rather than wait until the summer, according to the Express.

Despite the arrival of David Luiz, Conte is still desperate for another defender with John Terry set to leave at the end of the season and Kurt Zouma still yet to make a first-team appearance since his knee injury last February.

Claude Puel is determined to keep Van Dijk, but Southampton have always found it hard to keep their star players when large amounts of money are put in front of them.

The Express also say Conte has cooled his interest in Burnley’s Michael Keane in favour of Van Dijk.

The Mirror report that Chinese Super League club Tianjin Quanjian are plotting an £80m move for Diego Costa, despite the striker insisting he has no plans to leave the Blues.

Chelsea have already sold Oscar to Shaghai SIPG for £60m last month and Ramires to Jiangsu Suning for £25m 12 months ago.

Costa, who admitted he was ready to leave Stamford Bridge in the summer, is set to sign a new £200,000-a-week deal as a reward for his fine form this season, where he has already bagged 14 Premier League goals.

Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal has sparked speculation that he is on the verge of joining Chelsea by liking an Instagram post linking him with the Blues.

Vidal played under Conte at Juventus but Bayern are believed to be holding out around £40m for the 29-year-old.

Independent News Service

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