According to reports, Chelsea have agreed a £21m deal with Inter Milan for the sale of their central midfielder, Marcelo Brozovic. The report states that while the clubs are consenting on the transfer fee, Chelsea are still in negotiations with the player who seeks a substantial improvement from his current pay package in Italy. Though Chelsea are showing a new trait of haggling over the player wages, a deal is expected by all to be completed imminently. The player would represent Antonio Conte’s third signing of the summer after the purchase of Michy Batshuayi and N’Golo Kante.
After Conte took over at Chelsea, widespread changes were expected in the team which finished 10th last season. With the high-intensity approach of the Italian, players such as Cesc Fabregas, Nemanja Matic and a few others were thought to find it difficult under the new manager. With almost all of the team having a nightmare season, it looked as if the Italian meant to give the players a chance to impress in pre-season and the training sessions. But time and again Conte has reiterated his intentions of adding to the squad. He has been honest in his assessment. Stressing on the league finish last year, he has pointed out at the high expectations of the fans and the difficulty in attaining them.
Though they have got off to a perfect start points-wise, the performances of certain players like Eden Hazard, Willian and N’Golo Kante have papered over the cracks. And while Kante’s immediate impact on the team is a blessing, a pragmatic and practical manager like Antonio will not be resting on his laurels with the initial success of his signing. The position Kante occupies is an extremely pivotal one and the amount of work-rate and the length of the field he covers is next to none in the league.
While Matic and Fabregas look like they will be rotated for a spot in front of the former Leicester man, doubts still hang over their future at the club. An injury to Kante or any of the two aforementioned players would be extremely damaging to Chelsea. And most likely keeping these in mind Conte has gone for the Croatian midfielder.
On 24 January 2015, Brozović signed with Inter Milan on a year and half loan deal with a clause to make the deal permanent. He is considered a box-to-box midfielder but is comfortable playing in the centre of the midfield. He has also spent a considerable number of matches playing on the right side of midfield and further up the pitch. His passing catches the eye and his tendency to play key passes for his attackers stand out. The 23-year old midfielder is also adept at taking set-pieces and his eagerness to contribute defensively will help him fit in well with Conte’s philosophy. He will look to impress if he successfully completes the move and could well turn into the ideal partner for Kante as the season progresses.
Though the Croatian has just made his move to the Italian club permanent after being on loan from Dinamo Zagreb since January 2015, Inter are said to have shelled out around £7m to seal the switch and as a result, they are ready to instantly sell Brozovic on for a hefty profit. And after the purchase of Joao Mario and Gabriel Barbosa, they will look to balance the books with the FFP rules hovering above them.