Chelsea have been told they are Samuel Umtiti’s preferred destination if he is sold by Barcelona this summer.
But the Blues are currently pressing ahead with a move for Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes instead.
Barca misfit Umtiti has already been offered to Arsenal and Manchester United – and Chelsea have now enquired about him too.
Blues boss Frank Lampard wants a new centre back with Fikayo Tomori likely to be sent out on loan and doubts about the future of Kurt Zouma and Andreas Christensen.
But France World Cup winner Umtiti is rated at £45m, which has put off potential bidders.
Samuel Umtiti’s preferred destination this summer is Chelsea.
(Image: Getty Images)
Chelsea like the 26-year-old, who has 31 caps for his country, and asked for information about his situation.
And Barcelona are willing to listen to offers for Umtiti as they try to drum up funds for a spending spree.
He is not keen to leave the Nou Camp and wants talks with the club before deciding his future.
But intermediaries have already let Chelsea know that they are his preferred option if he is forced to leave.
For now, the Blues have added him to a shortlist of potential targets as they weigh up their options.
Gabriel Magalhaes has attracted plenty of attention.
But their top choice is Brazilian defender Magalhaes, who impressed twice against them in this season’s Champions League.
The 22-year-old is considered better business by Chelsea because of his age and asking price of around £30m.
But they face competition for his signature from at least three other clubs, with Everton also pushing hard to sign him.
Chelsea have already made a move for Magalhaes despite the uncertainty swirling around football because of the coronavirus outbreak.
Frank Lampard wants to change up his defence.
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The club do not yet know…