Chelsea are hopeful of sealing a deal for Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain before the end of the transfer window.
The Premier League champions are ready to pay £35million plus add-ons for the 24-year-old – who will also be in line for a sizeable wage increase.
The 24-year-old is out-of-contract at The Emirates next summer, and contract talks have not gone well with Arsenal not looking at giving him a big boost on his current deal.
Now Chelsea are ready to step in and make a move for the versatile England international, who can play in attack, midfield or at wing-back/full-back – and it is his ability to fill a range or roles that appeals to Antonio Conte.
I also understand that both Manchester clubs, United and City, and Liverpool have asked about ‘The Ox’ but he is settled in the capital and would rather remain in London – which has also meant approaches from the likes of AC Milan, Inter Milan, Monaco and Sevilla have been rebuffed.
Now Chelsea are in pole position to land Oxlade-Chamberlain this month, whilst they also look at moves for Virgil van Dijk, Fernando Llorente and a left-back.
Despite Chelsea’s confidence, Bookmakers believe he is likely to stay with The Gunners.
PaddyPower rate the Blues at 3/1 but he is 1/4 to remain with Arsenal.
“We make it 3/1 that the Ox goes to Chelsea, his most likely destination in the betting – but still odds-on to stay at Arsenal,” PaddyPower spokesman Lee Price.
“You can see why Conte wants him, though – Chelsea could do with an Ox-to-box midfielder.”