Chelsea lead race for defender described as a young Virgil van Dijk

Chelsea would absolutely love to add a Virgil van Dijk type defender to their back line, it is something they have been missing this season.

So when you hear of a defender who is being compared to the dominant Liverpool centre back, you are likely to sit up and take notice.

According to the players agent (as cited by The Daily Mail), Chelsea are leading the race to sign Barcelona centre back Xavier Mbuyamba.

The 18-year old joined Barcelona from MVV Maastricht last summer, but his agent, Carlos Barros, appears to be touting his next move already.

He confirms that there is interest from all over Europe, but it is Chelsea that have ‘the best papers’ and have been ‘discussed extensively last year.’

Barros said:

“Almost all major clubs in Europe have asked about Xavier.

“Real Madrid are also there, they are serious about their youth system, but that would of course be a sensitive switch.

“Juventus and Inter are interested, as are top clubs from Germany and England. Chelsea have the best papers. Of course we discussed this extensively last year.

“Chelsea gave a fantastic presentation. There is a unique football atmosphere there. You immediately sit with the first-team players during lunch and the club has outlined a very ambitious plan for Xavier.”

“They really think that in one to two years, he can be in the first team. Frank Lampard has of course already proven that he is not afraid to play with young players. Being in the starting line-up at Chelsea at the age of twenty would, of course, be great.”

Barros is not keen on his client staying at Barcelona because it can be incredibly difficult for youth players to earn opportunities at the Nou Camp.

Barros continued:

“The ambiguity is enormous,’ Barros said. ‘A new presidential election is coming and it could be that many new people will join the board.

“Politically it is very restless and in a sporting sense there is a lot of division. If you see that even Ansu Fati can be loaned out… How can you break through as a talent?”



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