Chelsea’s pursuit of Brighton & Hove Albion midfielder Moises Caicedo is ongoing.
The 21-year-old is valued at around £100 million by the Seagulls, who could sell for as low as £80 million, as reported by Fabrizio Romano in recent weeks. Chelsea have already had a bid of £60 million rejected by Brighton, as revealed by David Ornstein.
Chelsea aren’t the only suitors keen on Caicedo, Arsenal are waiting in the wings too and have considered making a bid. However, their preferred target is West Ham’s Declan Rice. Arsenal have already had two bids rejected for the England international.
Currently, Chelsea have a free run at Caicedo with Arsenal pursuing Rice, but Man City’s latest move will send a warning to the Blues that they must swiftly wrap up a deal for the Ecuadorian if they want to sign him.
As reported by David Ornstein of The Athletic, Pep Guardiola’s side are expected to make an opening offer for the West Ham midfielder on Thursday.
Nathan Gissing adds City are ready to offer £75 million in two instalments plus £15 million in add-ons, which are ‘thought to be realistically achievable’.
Rice is believed to prefer a move across the capital to stay in London, however he was coy on his future when asked earlier this month following West Ham’s Europa Conference League final triumph.
Arsenal are prepared to make another bid for Rice as Mikel Arteta attempts to get a deal over the line, but if they don’t, Chelsea will be looking firmly over their shoulder.
It would likely mean the Gunners would reignite their interest in Caicedo and compete with Chelsea for his signature. It would also give the upper hand to Brighton, like it has with West Ham, to demand the valuation due to two clubs battling it out in a public bidding war.
Caicedo has been told he will be allowed to leave Brighton this summer if the conditions of the deal are met, which would see him follow Alexis Mac Allister out of the door after his switch to Liverpool.
Arsenal and Chelsea are also currently negotiating for Kai Havertz, with a £65 million transfer agreement believed to have been struck between the clubs. Meanwhile, Mateo Kovacic is Manchester City bound to bolster their midfield following a £30 million agreement.