Chelsea eyeing Sporting defender Ousmane Diomande as long-term replacement for Thiago Silva
Posted by  badge Boss on Jan 26
Ousmane Diomande has been watched by Chelsea several times this season (Picture: Getty)

have signalled their interest in Sporting star Ousmane Diomande as they scour the market and look to sign ’s long-term successor ahead of the summer transfer window.

The Blues have spent in excess of £1billion on new recruits since took over the reins back in May 2022 and the club are preparing to splash the cash again after a poor start to the season under .

Axel Disasi, Benoit Badiashile and Wesley Fofana have all arrived through the doors at Stamford Bridge in recent windows, but the 39-year-old Silva remains a mainstay at the heart of Pochettino’s central defence when fit and available.

However, Silva’s current contract is due to expire at the end of the campaign – with the veteran Brazilian turning 40 in September – and the west London giants are drawing up a shortlist of possible replacements at centre-half.

According to Portuguese outlet , Chelsea view Sporting’s Diomande as the ‘perfect’ player to take over from Silva and have sent scouts to watch the 20-year-old several times this term.

The report claims Diomande has a €80million (£68m) release clause in his contract at Sporting, though, so a deal for the sought-after youngster will not come cheap.

Diomande joined Sporting from Midtjylland just 12 months ago, following an eye-catching loan spell with Primeira Liga outfit Mafra. The Ivory Coast international put pen to paper on a four-and-a-half year contract in Lisbon.

The Ivorian has a £68m release clause in his Sporting contract (Picture: Getty)

Last summer, and it’s understood the Gunners could rival their London neighbours for the 6 ft 3 in centre-back in the summer.

It appears unlikely that either Chelsea or Arsenal will make any high-profile permanent signings this month, with just days remaining until the January transfer deadline.

Both clubs have been credited with an interest in Karim Benzema, but the Al-Ittihad striker’s wage demands are blocking the Frenchman’s escape route out of Saudi Arabia.

Silva may be playing his last season of football at Chelsea (Picture: Getty)

Speaking to the media this week, Pochettino could not confirm whether or not it was Silva’s final season at Chelsea despite the defender recently stating that his career was ‘almost over’.

‘We didn’t talk about the next season. Because I didn’t hear, I don’t know what I can say about that,’ the Chelsea head coach told reporters.

‘Only he knows and the club if it’s going to be his last season or not.

‘I think always we talk about the present. It’s important for him to keep fit.

‘With his age, he’s doing fantastic. We are so happy with him.

‘What is going to happen in the future, that’s for him.’

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