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Why Inter Milan’s £50m cash injection from Newcastle could open door for Chelsea negotiations over trio



Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Inter Milan and Chelsea have been locked in talks over the future of three players after the transfer window officially opened on Wednesday.

The Italian side, who lost to Manchester City in the Champions League final last weekend, are interested in Chelsea duo Kalidou Koulibaly and Romelu Lukaku, while the Blues are keen on goalkeeper Andre Onana, who is valued at in excess of £50 million.

On Lukaku, Inter president Steven Zhang said: “The player showed great attachment to Inter. He’s an amazing guy. The guy has a contract with Chelsea, we have to wait to talk to them to understand.”

While Onana responded to questions on his future. He replied: “I’m so, so happy at Inter. At this professional level you never know what happens.

“I’m available for Inter, they decide and I will accept what they want. I’m happy at Inter.”

Inter want to sign Lukaku and defender Kalidou Koulibaly on loan, with, as reported by Nathan Gissing, a loan approach by the Champions League finalists already being rejected by Chelsea following a meeting between the clubs on Wednesday. Bayern Munich are also claimed to be considering the Senegal defender.

Chelsea want to strengthen their goalkeeper position this summer, adding to the uncertainty of Kepa Arrizabalaga and Edouard Mendy’s futures at the club, and Onana is a strong target.

However, Chelsea will refuse to pay over the market price for Onana, something they have done previously having pulled out of the deal to sign 22-year-old Sporting CP midfielder Manuel Ugarte.

But, as reported by the Daily Telegraph, Newcastle are ‘pushing hard’ to complete a deal for Inter midfielder Nicolo Barella for around £50 million.

Although there is ‘still work to do to conclude negotiations’, a ‘deal is thought to be reachable, with intensive talks taking place over the last few days’.

If Inter are able to command a high fee for the Italian, should he go to Newcastle, it could open the door for negotiations to advance between Inter and Chelsea involving all or some of Onana, Koulibaly and Lukaku.