CHELSEA are reportedly close to landing Red Bull Salzburg chief Christian Freund as their next sporting director.
Owner Todd Boehly has been keen to bring in a transfer boss after conducting Chelsea’s summer business.
And now he has a new manager at the helm in Graham Potter, he wants a new sporting director in place to work alongside him.
According to Fabrizio Romano, the Blues are close to hiring Freund after agreeing personal terms with the Austrian.
Next Chelsea have to finalise a compensation package with Salzburg to secure the transfer guru.
Chelsea have also been linked with a move for Paris Saint-Germain advisor Luis Campos and reportedly offered him £135,000-a-week.
Former Liverpool transfer chief Michael Edwards was also on the Blues’ radar in the summer but it appears Boehly has turned to other targets.
And it seems he has found his man in Freund, who gave Erling Haaland his first shot at the big time when he signed him at Salzburg.
Haaland first came to prominence for the Austrian side with his scintillating performances in the Champions League and subsequently earned a move to Borussia Dortmund.
Freund was also responsible for identifying the talent of a raw and unproven Sadio Mane, as well as Naby Keita and Bayern Munich star Dayot Upamecano.
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Freund will likely be given significant funds after Chelsea spent big in the summer – breaking the British record for total spend in one transfer window.
The West Londoners splashed a record £273.5m during this past summer transfer window.
Chelsea signed Marc Cucurella, Raheem Sterling, Kalidou Koulibaly, Carney Chukwuemeka, Cesare Casadei, Gabriel Slonina, Omari Hutchinson, Wesley Fofana, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Denis Zakaria.
And Boehly is now prepared to back more signings as the club still targets a top-four finish.