Chelsea may have made the first step towards major summer transfer if Serie A star joins Leicester

If you were to judge Chelsea’s transfer plans just by the quantity and depth of rumours around each position, the race to be Frank Lampard’s new starting left back would already be over.

Alex Telles has been linked with a move to West London for about 5 years now, and is clearly near the front of the field. But the winner of the last 12 months has to be Ben Chilwell, the Leicester left back.

There have been countless links to him, and since Lampard arrived they’ve only grown in intensity.

The problem will be prising him away from Leicester, who have plenty of money of their own and aren’t willing to give up their assets easily. They shook £80m+ out of Manchester United last summer for Harry Maguire, and would want similar this summer for Chilwell, one imagines.

The first step of persuading them to let him go, in any case, is ensuring they have a replacement for him in line. Football.London believes that may now be in place – they claim that the Foxes will move for Robin Gosens of Atalanta to fill the gap their current incumbent would leave.

It hardly guarantees Chelsea the player they’ve been chasing, but it’s another important step towards agreeing a deal that will be costly and difficult to conclude, especially in a strange summer like this.

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