Chelsea are “ready to bid” for Sassuolo midfielder Manuel Locatelli, according to Tuttomercatoweb.com. The 23-year-old has been heavily linked with Manchester City and Juventus in recent months but the Italian website reports that the Blues are also involved in the battle for the player’s signature.
Blues boss Thomas Tuchel is thought to be keen on strengthening his midfield options this summer, although many believe he is looking for a more defensive-minded player such as West Ham’s Declan Rice.
Locatelli is more of a playmaker, although he does prefer to play in a more deep-lying role, which could suggest he is being considered as an alternative for Jorginho, whose inconsistent form continues to frustrate fans.
Sassuolo’s chief executive Giovanni Carnevali has made it known in recent days that they have received official enquiries from club’s abroad:
“We hope Locatelli will be among the protagonists with Italy, and we want to delay every negotiation to after the Euro. We have not received the right bid that satisfies everybody yet. The most serious recent inquiries came from foreign clubs, not from Juventus, which approached us last year. We are open to every solution. We will try to do what the player asks us, but we do not necessarily need to sell anybody. In that event, we would rather not include other players in the deal.”
Reports in April suggested that Sassuolo may be open to selling Locatelli for around €40m (£34m) but that figure may increase if he impresses at the European Championships with Italy.