Chelsea have suffered a transfer blow when it comes to outgoings, with Serie A side Napoli turning attentions away from left-back Emerson Palmieri.
Emerson, 26, made a total of only 15 appearances in all competitions for the Blues in the last campaign, and is said to be keen on returning to Italy with less than a year left on his current contract.
The ex-Roma full-back has already been linked to host of Italian clubs already this summer, with Napoli and Juventus seemingly leading the race.
However the latest developments from Sky Sport Italia (via Football Italia) has changed the landscape in who seems now to be more active in trying to bring the 26-year-old back to his homeland this summer.
Sky Sport Italia are saying the Napoli are turning towards Getafe left-back Mathias Olivera, according to Sky Sport Italia, as a cheaper alternative to the Chelsea left-back.
This is despite new manager’s Luciano Spalletti’s specific request to bring in Emerson this summer, who impressed for Italy at UEFA Euro 2020 when taking over from injured Leonardo Spinazzola.
Although there is a will to get this deal done from both sides, the asking price from the Blues is well over €20m, considerably more than what Maurizio Sarri’s ex-club were prepared to offer in negotiations.
As a result, Gianluca Di Marzio has claimed that the Naples based side are now instead turning towards a cheaper alternative in the form of Mathias Olivera.
The 23-year-old Getafe left-back is Uruguayan and can also play in a more advanced role down the left side of midfield.
His contract with Getafe runs to June 2023 and the asking price is reported to be circa €15-18m.
Despite the price between the two options being in similar range, the whole transfer package when considering wages is considerably cheaper for Olivera compared to Emerson.
This is a big blow for the Italian left-back who is seeking more first team football back in a country where he established himself as one of the top left-backs at AS Roma.
A loan move back to his old club to unite with new boss Jose Mourinho can’t be ruled out with the ex-Tottenham boss keen on a number of players he knows well from the Premier League.
Napoli could even still make a move for the wantaway Blues defender this summer.
The summer window is officially open and now the Blues can look to build on European glory and bolster the squad to push for Premier League supremacy.
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Their latest stance could be a powerplay to try and get the west London club to lower their demands when it comes to a fee.
We know already how much Spalletti wants him.
Journalist Fabrizio Romano sent out a tweet recently which quoted Spalletti as saying: “I can’t say if I called Emerson to join Napoli or not… maybe yes, maybe it’s happened.”
And with a Euros Championship title won with the Azzurri, the 26-year-old has done as much as he can to put himself in the shop window ahead of a potential transfer away from west-London this summer.