Chelsea close in on deal for Olympique Marseille’s César Azpilicueta.
Chelsea and Olympique de Marseille are in advanced negotiations over the transfer of the French club’s Spanish right-back César Azpilicueta. A fee has yet to be agreed but both sides are keen to conclude a deal as the new season edges ever closer.
Azpilicueta, who was signed from Osasuna two years ago for about £5.8m and was a member of Spain’s squad at the Olympic Games, has been earmarked to replace José Bosingwa at Stamford Bridge after the Portuguese was released last month. The Marseille president, Vincent Labrune, confirmed earlier this week that a “very serious” offer had been submitted by the European champions for the 22-year-old, who is contracted until 2014, though that opening bid was deemed unsatisfactory.
However, dialogue is ongoing between the clubs with a view to striking a compromise after Azpilicueta made it clear his preference was to move to the Premier League.
The French club are interested in signing Gaël Kakuta from Chelsea and the 21-year-old could yet be used as a makeweight in any deal. The forward, who has spent time on loan at Fulham, Bolton Wanderers and Dijon, is on the fringes at Stamford Bridge and is expected to leave in search of first-team football before the start of the new season. Lyon are also interested in securing his services.
the European Champions and the Ligue 1 outfit are in advanced negotiations regarding the transfer of the 22-year-old.
The Blues are in a search of a new right-back following the departure of Jose Bosingwa, who was released last month. And the bosses at the club have identified Azpilicueta as the player who can fill that void.
The Spaniard, who was a part of Spain’s squad at the Olympics, was signed by Marseille couple of seasons back from Osasuna, for a fee believed to be in the region of 5.8 million Pounds. And Les Phoceens want at least 8 million pounds for the player.
Marseille vice president, Vincent Labrune, has claimed that the London giants are very serious in their pursuit of the 22-year-old and they have already tabled an offer for the player.
The vice president revealed that he has held talks with Chelsea regarding Azpilicueta’s transfer but so far, they have not decided on anything.
“I have spoken to Chelsea’s chief executive and they are easy to deal with.”
Labrune added that they have told the capital club their demands and now it’s up to them to come back for the Spaniard.
“We have told them the price and the completion of transfer now depends on them,” the vice president told reporters.
Vincent Labrune stated that Marseille want to keep hold of the player but it’s his wish to move to the Premier League and club will not stand in his way.
“We would prefer the player to sign a new contract and stay but he wants to go to Chelsea and it’s a good club so we cannot stand in his way.”
Marseille are struggling financially and are in dire need of cash. Although the Ligue 1 outfit would like to keep Azpilicueta at Stade Velodrome, a tempting offer from the cash-laden Premier League club would be hard to resist.
Watch Cesar Azpilicueta