CHELSEA have reportedly been given a free run at signing Jules Kounde.
That’s because Barcelona are unable to meet Sevilla’s £65million asking price.
The LaLiga giants are already set to snap up Andreas Christensen on a free transfer from Chelsea.
The Frenchman has become one of Europe’s top centre-backs after some fine performances for club and country.
And Sevilla feel Kounde should be selling for around £65m this summer.
However, broke Barcelona do not have that kind of money lying around.
And that opens the door for Chelsea to finally completely a highly-anticipated deal.
It’s reckoned Kounde has already agreed a five-year contract to join Thomas Tuchel’s world champions.
But the Blues are yet to agree a figure with Sevilla after being priced out of a deal last summer.
Most read in Football
Yet with Barcelona seemingly out of the picture, Chelsea can enter negotiations confident they are the only club left in the running.
Newcastle had also been linked with a shock swoop for Kounde this month.
But the ace is determined to play in the Champions League and would not consider a move to St James’ Park.
Kounde has been with Sevilla for three years after joining from Bordeaux.
He has made 133 appearances for the Spaniards.
And Kounde was part of the side which won the Europa League in 2020.