David Luiz remains a Chelsea player for the time being despite his move to Paris St-Germain appearing a matter of when rather than if, although it is not known whether the defender will complete his big money move before the start of the World Cup.
The French champions made their move for Luiz last month which was hardly surprising given their interest in the centre-back, although the near-£50m fee agreed to cause a few reverberations across the football world at what would be a new world transfer record for a defender, eclipsing the Parisian’s €40m fee they paid to Roma for centre-back Marquinhos last season.
Luiz even said farewell to Chelsea fans on 24 May, saying that he is thankful for his time at Stamford Bridge and that a new challenge awaits in Paris.
Tks CFC for this time of great partnership. I'm thankful for all! It's a new challenge and together we ll go even further. Allez Paris!; David Luiz (@DavidLuiz_4) May 24, 2014
Yet with the deal – believed to be £48m, signed and sealed, and his medical completed, why hasn’t PSG’s capture of their latest high profile signing been announced yet?
Initial reactions were that negotiations could be on-going over a future switch between Chelsea’s Eden Hazard and PSG’s Ezequiel Lavezzi, with both players attracting interest from the opposite club. This interest was increased when the two sides met in the Champions League quarter-final, with both Lavezzi and Hazard scoring in the first leg at the Parc des Princes.
However, The Independent believes that this is not the case and that any negotiations over future transfers are not part of the Luiz deal. With the 27-year-old going through his final preparations with the rest of the Brazil squad, the deal could be delayed until after the World Cup, although PSG have shown their intent to secure the move after allowing former Chelsea defender Alex to join AC Milan last week.
Chelsea: Potential summer transfer targets
Chelsea: Potential summer transfer targets
1/9 Paul Pogba
Former Manchester United midfielder was spotted in west London setting the rumour mill into overdrive. The classy French midfielder, still just 21, impressed at the World Cup and has been linked with a blockbuster £60m move to Stamford Bridge, despite the recent arrival of Cesc Fabregas. However, he is also linked with a move to Manchester City as a potential replacement for Yaya Toure.
2/9 Adrien Rabiot
The talented teen put clubs in Europe on alert after rejecting a contract offer from Paris Saint-Germain. Chelsea made a move for the Frenchman in January and have gone back in for him, even though he is highly rated by PSG coach Laurent Blanc.
3/9 Sami Khedira
The German midfielder missed five months for Real Madrid's season with a knee injury and has played just 15 games this term. With Madrid reportedly interested in signing new players in central midfield, Khedira's future at the Bernabeu could be at an end. The 27-year-old is interesting Arsenal, but should Chelsea go in for him too, they would be getting a player that Mourinho knows well and real quality in front of the back four, not dissimilar to club legend Claude Makelele.
4/9 Yaya Toure
An outside bet, of course, but with all the drama surrounding the Toure and Manchester City recently, Chelsea could swoop. A powerhouse of a midfielder with a surprisingly deft touch and devastating skill at the dead ball, the 31-year-old would be huge assent to any team in the world. Toure cost City £24million in 2010, so any offer would have to huge from Chelsea if they are to persuade the Sky Blues to sell to a title rival.
Tottenham's summer signing hasn't quite lived up to the form he reached in Brazil's Confederations Cup victory in 2013 and struggled at the World Cup, but he has still performed well enough to have Chelsea and Real Madrid reportedly interested in acquiring his services. The 25-year-old would fit in well at Stamford Bridge given the Blues' strong Brazilian contingent already. Paulinho had a mixed first season in the Premier League, scored six goals with three assists last season and not the return Spurs were hoping for, and the lure of Champions League football could persuade the midfielder to switch London clubs.
6/9 Fabio Coentrao
With Ashley Cole having joined Roma and Ryan Bertrand also likely to leave, Jose Mourinho will be in need of a quality, experienced left-back and one possibility is Real Madrid's Coentrao. The 26-year-old came close to joining Manchester United in January and is likely to lose his starting place at Madrid when Marcelo is fully fit again next season. Carlo Ancelotti denies any rumours that the Portuguese defender will leave but if the right offer were to be made by Chelsea, he could be on his way to London and nail down a starting role with ease.
7/9 Edinson Cavani
After a season of playing in the shadow of Zlatan Ibrahimovic at PSG, Cavani looks likely to leave the French side after just one year and become the main man at an English club next season. Chelsea remain interested in the Uruguayan but Chelsea are despite a deal for Diego Costa already complete, but may face competition from Manchester United. The 27-year-old cost PSG €64.5million last summer, so any offer from Mourinho would take a large slice of his funds but with his striking power and goals an almost guarantee, it could be a risk worth going for.
8/9 Radamel Falcao
The Colombian striker did not regain fitness in time for the World Cup but it has given him a good chance to weigh up his future. Seemingly always in transfer rumours despite his €60m switch to Monaco last summer, Falcao is a long-term target of the Blues, though Diego Costa has filled the previously vacant No 9 role. The 28-year-old lit up La Liga during his two seasons with Atlectico Madrid but, mainly because of injury, has failed to live up to his price tag in France. If unrest reports are true, Chelsea could attempt an offer.
9/9 Raphael Varane
Reportedly unhappy at Real Madrid due to his low wages in comparison to his team-mates, the centre back has been linked with a move away. Chelsea are reportedly one of the clubs interested in the France international with Jose Mourinho seeing him as a long-term replacement for John Terry.
With Luiz set to join, PSG could start the 2014-15 season with Brazil’s starting central defence partnership, as the Selecao’s captain Thiago Silva would likely partner Luiz at the back with current options Marquinhos and Maxwell also able to fill in at full-back, the club could start with an all-Brazilian back four next season.
Meanwhile, Chelsea may not move to replace Luiz given that France youngster Kurt Zouma will join the squad in the summer. The 19-year-old was signed in January but remained in France with his former side St Etienne on loan until the end of the season, and he’ll face a challenge to push one of John Terry and Gary Cahill out of the starting line-up if he isn’t sent out on loan again in the new season.
The club have been linked with possible moves for Real Madrid’s Raphael Verane and Porto’s Eliaquim Mangala, although whether they will move to strengthen their defence further this summer remains to be seen as the priority remains landing at least one striker. Academy product Tomas Kalas was given a chance in the first team towards the end of the season as Chelsea’s resources were stretched to the limit, and the 21-year-old Czech international didn’t disgrace himself as the Blues only conceded once in the four appearances he made all season.
The deal for Diego Costa could still go through before the start of the World Cup, although the £32m fee would still leave Jose Mourinho with around £16m solely from the Luiz sale to reinvest, and with interest also in midfielders Cesc Fabregas, Koke and former player Tiago Mendes, it appears Chelsea have a busy summer ahead of them.
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