Chelsea are said to be continuing their pursuit of Juventus full-back Alex Sandro. According to reports, Antonio Conte has been given a “boost” in his efforts to woo the 26-year-old as “a growing acceptance” that his future lies outside Turin is being reached.
Head coach Antonio Conte
made Sandro one of his top summer targets , but, having been confident of landing the Brazilian, Chelsea walked away from a deal when Juve refused to drop their £80million asking price.
But Juve may now be forced to sell Sandro for around £50m after the 26-year-old made it clear to the club that he is unhappy.
Sandro refused to try to force through a move to Stamford Bridge during the summer, but that may be different if the Blues make a new bid in January.
Whether or not Juve will sell in January, rather than next summer, may depend on whether or not they can line up a replacement.
Both Chelsea and Juventus sent representatives to watch Porto left-back Alex Telles recently, but Conte would dearly love to sign Sandro in the upcoming transfer window.
Chelsea are still looking to strengthen their options on the left, where Marcos Alonso has been forced to play in almost every game.
Alonso is third in the list of Chelsea players who have spent the most minutes on the pitch, behind goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois and Cesar Azpilicueta.
He was given a well-deserved rest against Atletico Madrid , with Davide Zappacosta standing in as a makeshift replacement.
Conte does not have another senior left-back at Chelsea and sees the position as one of his number one priorities to strengthen as the Italian combines Premier League and Champions League campaigns.
Sandro is rated as one of the best left-backs in the world, but has suffered a difficult season since Chelsea’s interest was rebuffed during the summer.
His relationship with key members of staff at the Serie A giants has broken down and there is a growing acceptance that a move away would be best for all parties.
Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City also showed an interest in Sandro during the summer, and the Premier League leaders are without a natural left-back while Benjamin Mendy recovers from injury.
Other than a left-back, Chelsea are also looking at whether they can find a striker in January to help ease the burden on Alvaro Morata and remain interested in Ross Barkley, who turned down a summer move.