Chelsea close in on Robinho as final signing of the summer

Chelsea are increasingly confident that they will be able to sign Robinho from Real Madrid within the next two weeks following another meeting in London with the Brazilian's agent Wagner Ribeiro.

The transfer fee for the 24-year-old is still to be finalised, with Chelsea sources insisting they will not pay more than £30m for the striker. But personal terms are now understood to have been agreed, while Ribeiro yesterday reassured Chelsea that Robinho wants to join them if he leaves Real and that the club are prepared to sell. Indeed, Real have privately been accused by the Brazilian Football Confederation of withdrawing Robinho from their Olympic squad so as not to jeopardise his transfer.

Yesterday, the Chelsea chief executive, Peter Kenyon, speaking ahead of the first match of the club's pre-season tour, against Guangzhou Pharmaceutical today in China, said: "I think as far as Robinho is concerned it is quite right he has been one of our targets. We have had several conversations with Madrid and he is a player we think would add a great deal to Chelsea.

"We have got a fantastic squad and that has been strengthened with [Jose] Bosingwa and Deco and I think the coach [Luiz Felipe Scolari] was just looking for one more to complete what he thinks is the perfect squad. There is still a long way to go on that one [Robinho], but we are very, very interested and the clubs are in dialogue."

If Robinho is indeed Chelsea's final signing of the summer, it means Scolari will get his wish to drastically reduce the squad size. Chelsea are understood to be mulling over an offer from Roma for their winger Florent Malouda, who has failed to make an impact after arriving from Lyons last summer for £13.5m and has not settled in England.

Initially, Roma, who need to replace Mancini after selling the Brazilian to Internazionale, proposed a loan deal, but Chelsea are more interested in a sale and want to recoup the fee they paid. However, the Serie A club are understood to have verbally offered only €13m (£10.3m) for the France winger but are expected to improve their bid.

Chelsea have denied making a bid for the Barcelona striker Samuel Eto'o and maintain that they are not about to sell Didier Drogba. However neither are they set to offer the 30-year-old a new contract – which his agents have asked for – which, following fresh deals for Wayne Bridge and Petr Cech, is what Michael Essien has been awarded. The 25-year-old midfielder has agreed a new five-year contract.

If Malouda leaves Chelsea, he is likely to be followed by another winger, Shaun Wright-Phillips. Chelsea want £10m for the 26-year-old and have told him he can go, while Wright-Phillips has indicated he would be willing to join Portsmouth. Their manager Harry Redknapp said of Wright-Phillips: "I don't think he will be more expensive than Crouchie [Peter Crouch] but Shaun Wright-Phillips will be another expensive buy. He will be a terrific buy and he will bring something to the team that maybe we lack."

Redknapp will have to sell first, having spent a potential £11m on Crouch, and after revealing that the club had turned down an offer of £12m from Monaco for Niko Kranjcar, it is believed they are willing to sell the Croatian if they get a bid of £15m. Meanwhile, Portsmouth denied yesterday that they had received a bid of £12m from Inter for Sulley Muntari. They would like to sell John Utaka, Sean Davis, Richard Hughes and Pedro Mendes, while Noé Pamarot is resisting a move to Hull City.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones