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Chelsea ahead of Arsenal, Liverpool and Man City in transfer battle for Sancho alternative

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Chelsea have identified Samuel Chukwueze as a potential alternative to Jadon Sancho this summer, and reportedly have a vital advantage when it comes to signing the winger.A number of Premier League clubs are said to be interested in the Villarreal star, but the Blues are supposedly leading the race for the 21-year-old.

Chukwueze has made a big impression in La Liga, enjoying a breakthrough campaign in 2018/19 before cementing his first-team spot with four goals and four assists in 30 outings across all competitions this term.

While that output pales in comparison to Sancho’s prolific returns in the Bundesliga, big things are expected from Chukwueze and the Nigerian ace has already been capped 12 times at international level.

Reports from Spain suggest that Chelsea are the latest Premier League club to take an interest in the youngster, with Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City supposedly monitoring the situation.

However, the latest update from AS indicates that the Blues have an advantage over the trio with Chukwueze a fan of the west London club since childhood.

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It is acknowledged that Sancho, who has notched 30 goals and 39 assists in all competitions across the past two seasons in Germany, is top of Chelsea’s summer wishlist.

However, Borussia Dortmund are expected to demand around £120m for the 20-year-old England international and Manchester United are also keen on his services.

Chukwueze is therefore considered a cheaper alternative, although he reportedly possesses a weighty €100m (£90m) release clause according to AS.

Conflicting reports suggest this figure is closer to €50m (£45m) but it is unclear whether Villarreal would accept such an amount.

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Arsenal have recently signed Nicolas Pepe for a club-record £72m so it is unlikely that they would invest so heavily in another player who predominantly plays on the right wing.

Meanwhile, Liverpool and City both have formidable squads already but could be tempted to splash the cash and plan for the future by snapping up the youngster.

Chelsea have also been linked with moves for Philippe Coutinho and Kai Havertz, but the former looks most likely to move on loan if he does depart Barcelona this summer.

FC Porto winger Jesus Corona is another player who could arrive at Stamford Bridge in the coming months as Frank Lampard prepares to lose Willian and Pedro when their contracts expire.

READ MORE Chelsea learn of Philippe Coutinho transfer twist, Man Utd interested

Olivier Giroud has been handed a new contract but Michy Batshuayi is expected to be sold so Chelsea need a new No 9 to ease the goalscoring burden on Tammy Abraham.

They are also searching for a new left-back as both Emerson Palmieri and Marcos Alonso have been linked with transfers to Serie A.

Ben Chilwell is the Blues’ priority target in that position, although Leicester are expected to want £80m - the same fee United paid for Harry Maguire.last year.

Alex Telles and Nicolas Tagliafico are more affordable options while Robin Gosens and Alex Sandro have also been discussed as potential options.

For more news relating to Chelsea, visit our sister site Chelsea Live.

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