Chelsea were relatively inactive in the transfer market as long as the club didn’t officially part ways with Antonio Conte. Now with Maurizio Sarri at the helm of the club, the Blues have started making some moves. They secured the signing of Jorginho from the clutches of Manchester City and are now close to sealing the deal for Juventus defender Daniele Rugani.
The deal is said to be worth £44m and various sources are reporting that the move has been agreed. It’s being said that the defender will sign a five-year contract worth £77,000-a-week. The 23-year-old has slowly established himself with the Old lady as he had made 26 appearances in all competitions last season. Sarri will be looking to get the Pensioners back to Champions League football and bringing in a defensive cover is an utmost priority for the club.
Antonio Conte delivered a silverware when his team won the FA Cup last season but that wasn’t good enough to save his job. Sarri’s Napoli ran Juventus close in the Serie A last season, but Juventus ran out as the champions once again.
Rugani has played for Italy at various youth levels and has even broken into the senior team as he has made seven appearances for the Azzurri’s national side.
Conte had built his title-winning side on the back of strong defensive performances but last season, the experienced pairing of Gary Cahill and David Luiz let him down and the Italian manager had to rely on the rather inexperienced duo of Andreas Christiansen and Antonio Rudiger. Both of them showed promise but need some more time to perform at a high level on a consistent basis. Poor defensive performances and a misfiring striker were some of the reasons why the Pensioners missed out on the coveted Champions League spot as they finished fifth.
Rugani is talented and has shown massive potential but the Premier League will be the sternest test of his career. It remains to be seen whether he will be able to adjust to the tempo and physicality of the league as many players from other leagues find it tough to establish themselves straightaway.
The Italian defender reads the game well and his positional sense is excellent. He is even comfortable playing out from the back and that will suit Sarri’s philosophy. The defender is just 23 so there is still some room for improvement but given the money the Pensioners are spending on him, he should be close to a finished product.