England star could head to London in a surprise summer switch.
Chelsea are targeting the summer transfer signing of Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling with simultaneous talks to offload Romelu Lukaku still ongoing, GOAL understands.
Inter have offered a fee of up to £6 million to the Blues, but Thomas Tuchel’s organisation are demanding more for the striker as they look to create more financial space for a signing such as Sterling, who only has one year left on his deal with the Premier League champions.
Chelsea are ready to compromise and let Lukaku go for around a £10m ($12m) loan fee – far less than they initially requested.
Reports in Italy have suggested that the England international could cost as little as £35m ($43m) this summer which would be well within the west London club’s budget.
Man City have failed in a bid to renew Sterling’s deal amid concerns about his status within a squad with so many other high-profile attackers.
Chelsea have long held an interest in Sterling, who is open to moving abroad should a move to his home city London not materialise.
There are concerns that City could make life difficult in negotiations for a rival like Chelsea, though Gabriel Jesus was previously offered to Thomas Tuchel’s side and is now in concrete talks with Arsenal.
Chelsea are in more active negotiations to sign Sevilla’s Jules Kounde, who has broadly agreed on personal terms. However, there remains work to do on agreeing on a transfer fee.
Kounde is also attracting interest from Barcelona but they’re currently paralysed from offering anything concrete due to financial issues.
The France international has had surgery on a minor hip issue and is hoping his future is resolved in the coming weeks ahead of pre-season.
Chelsea are also in talks with Chicago Fire’s 18-year-old goalkeeping sensation Gabriel Slonina, who will likely go back on loan until the end of the season if he signs.
Meanwhile, the Blues have targets in other areas of the pitch depending on player sales which include, as GOAL first revealed, Brighton’s Marc Cucurella.
There’s also long-term interest in West Ham’s Declan Rice with other central defenders being targeted like RB Leipzig’s Josko Gvardiol, Atletico Madrid’s Jose Gimenez and Paris Saint-Germain’s Presnel Kimpembe.
The Blues have also tried to leverage Inter’s interest in Lukaku to swap him for Lautaro Martinez, Denzel Dumfries, Milan Skriniar and Alessandro Bastoni. They’ve seen their requests for these players rejected out of hand, though.
Barcelona are attempting to sign Cesar Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso but currently have no funds to make those moves happen.
Chelsea are open to sales of other attackers like Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner but no moves seem imminent.
They also have to resolve the future of both N’Golo Kante and Jorginho heading into the final years of their contracts.
Tuchel is open to letting Kepa Arrizabalaga go with loanees vying for his and any other spots that open up in the squad over pre-season.