Chelsea transfer news: Blues 'set to land' Mehdi Benatia for £30m - reports

Roma defender could arrive before the end of the week, according to reports

Chelsea could land Roma centre-back Mehdi Benatia before the end of the week, according to reports.

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The Daily Star say Jose Mourinho is ready to spend £30m to bring the 27-year-old to Stamford Bridge.

The Chelsea manager has been linked with numerous defenders this summer, after the sale of David Luiz to Paris Saint-Germain left the Blues looking light at centre-back.

John Terry and Gary Cahill are Mourinho's clear first choice, but beyond that the Chelsea manager only has the versatile Branislav Ivanovic and youngsters Kurt Zouma and Nathan Ake to call upon.

Chelsea are still linked with a move for Real Madrid's Raphael Varane, but Joao Miranda of Atletico Madrid made it clear he wanted to stay with the Spanish champions.

However, should Chelsea move for the classy Moroccan they will first have to sell a foreign player because of Premier League quotas.

Video: The latest transfer news

One of Petr Cech or Thibaut Courtois could still be set for an exit with neither happy to be No 2, while John Obi Mikel is surplus to requirements after the arrival of Cesc Fabregas and Nemanja Matic in January.

Benatia moved to Roma just last summer for around £10m after a three year spell with Udinese.

At 6ft 2in Benatia is strong in the air and in the tackle and is a gifted athlete. A leader, Benatia is very composed on the ball and is a threat from set-pieces, scoring five goals for Roma last season as they finished runners-up.

Benatia is also linked with a move to Manchester United.

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