Chelsea’s disputes over €1.5m a year could cost them their top player for central midfield

Manuel Ugarte is looking like he’s going to be Chelsea’s first major transfer saga of the summer. Although it shouldn’t be that way.

The Sporting CP midfielder has a €60m release clause by all accounts, which should make a deal a breeze. Pay the money (as Chelsea have apparently agreed to), sort out a contract and hey presto, you’ve got yourself a tenacious Uruguayan central midfielder.

But there is a big stumbling block here – PSG. The Parisians also want Ugarte, and have also paid his €60m clause. It’s not down to the player to decide, and that usually comes down to money.

Reports earlier in the week were that Chelsea had offered him a €2m annual contract, with PSG dwarfing that by offering €5m. Today, SportWitness have revealed that Chelsea are raising their big to €3.5m.

We’re not sure how effective that will be. Given PSG are in the Champions Leagues and can offer pretty much guaranteed Ligue 1 titles along the way, while we are a dysfunctional mess, surely we’re going to have to offer MORE than them, not just 70% of what they’ve put on the table.

All this messing around is going to drag on and on – and then we’ll end up offering €5m in the end anyway. Let’s just cut to the chase and find out if he’s on board, or if we should progress down our shortlist to other targets.

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