Chelsea have reportedly given Mauricio Pochettino the go-ahead to sign a replacement for Mason Mount this summer, and Celta Vigo star Gabri Veiga is reportedly their top target.
United have made three bids for Mount already this summer but Chelsea have rejected all three so far.
Their latest offer was worth a reported £55m but it has been claimed that the Stamford Bridge outfit are holding out for as much as £65m, a figure which the Red Devils claim includes ‘United tax’.
Reports claimed United had walked away from the deal last week but according to the Daily Mail, discussions have reopened with a view to trying to find a compromise between United’s third bid and the Blues’ asking price of £65m.
It’s been suggested that United’s supposed interest in Brighton’s Moises Caicedo may be a tactic to sharpen Chelsea’s focus when it comes to the Mount negotiations, given the Ecuador international is the Blues’ top midfield target this summer.
For a long time it was reported that a player in Caicedo’s mould would be the only midfield addition this summer, but Evening Standard now claim Chelsea ‘are expected to move for Veiga if Mount joins Manchester United’.
‘Internal discussions about a replacement for Mount’ have taken place with ‘the success of their clear-out of unwanted players meaning Chelsea are also increasingly open to signing a more attacking midfielder’.
It’s claimed Veiga, who’s also been linked with Manchester City, Liverpool and Manchester United is ‘their top target for that position’.
The 21-year-old, who has a release clause of £34.6m, has been ‘sounded out over a move’.
There’s space in the squad following Kai Havertz’s move to Arsenal, N’Golo Kante’s move to Al-Ittihad and Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s imminent transfer to AC Milan.
It’s also claimed that Chelsea remain open to selling a further midfielder in Conor Gallagher, though Pochettino would rather keep him at the club.
Veiga could become Chelsea’s third signing after the summer after Christopher Nkunku joined for £52m from RB Leipzig, while Nicolas Jackson has completed his medical ahead of his £32m move to Stamford Bridge.