Chelsea face competition from Manchester United in race for centre back with €1bn release clause

Chelsea are interested in signing Barcelona defender Ronald Araujo as the Blues eye a replacement for Thiago Silva according to reports.

Despite not currently having a manager in place the Blues are pressing ahead with their plans for what is set to be another busy transfer window.

Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital haven’t been shy of spending since they took over the club two years ago, and have broken the British transfer record twice in that time.

Chelsea eye move for Araujo

The Blues are believed to be looking to sign a striker, centre back and a left back depending on what happens with Marc Cucurella and Ben Chilwell.

Silva is unlikely to be the only centre back to leave Stamford Bridge this summer, with Trevoh Chalobah expected to be sold for Financial Fair Play reasons, a move which is unlikely to improve the relationship between the fans and the owners.

The Blues have been linked with several centre backs including Ousmane Diomande and Leny Yoro, but Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo have reported Chelsea could be lining up a move for Araujo, and believe he is capable of leading their backline.

Araujo could leave Barcelona this summer with interest coming from the Premier League.

The Uruguay international is currently under contract with the Spanish giants until 2026 and has an unrealistic release clause of €1bn.

The report adds a move for the 25-year-old could be difficult due to him being on Barcelona’s “non transferable priority list.”

Mundo Deportivo also state that due to Barcelona’s well documented financial issues a huge bid could tempt the Catalan outfit into selling.

If the Blues were to pursue a move for the Uruguayan they are expected to face competition from rivals Manchester United and German giants Bayern Munich.

Chelsea currently have a talented pool of centre backs on their books with Levi Colwill, Benoit Badiashile, Wesley Fofana, Axel Disasi and Chalobah all currently at the club.

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