These are incredibly exciting times to be a Chelsea supporter.
After winning the UEFA Champions League for the second time in their rich and colourful history last month, the Blues are now hoping to enjoy another successful summer transfer window in a bid to turn themselves back into leading Premier League title contenders for next term.
Head coach Thomas Tuchel, unsurprisingly, has aspirations to put his own stamp of authority on his squad as he still waits to make his first signing as Chelsea boss.
However, the German has grand ambitions this summer, with the likes of Inter Milan ace Achraf Hakimi and Erling Haaland of Borussia Dortmund firmly on the Blues’ radar.
Landing a new right wing-back and a proven goal-getter are at the very top of Tuchel’s wish-list, as both positions, he feels, are in need of strengthening ahead of the new campaign.
But as well as looking to add to the wing-back berth and improving the club’s attacking department, Tuchel, according to reports, also wants to strengthen his central-defensive options following Fikayo Tomori’s move to AC Milan.
Tomori, who was left out of Gareth Southgate’s England squad for this summer’s rearranged European Championship, joined Milan last week in a £25million deal, leaving the Blues a man short in central defence.
However, despite having the likes of Marc Guehi, Malang Sarr and Xavier Mbuyamba, all of whom will be looking to creep into Tuchel’s thoughts next term, on their books, Chelsea are exploring other avenues in the search for a new centre-back.
One name that has come to the surface in the last couple of days is Leicester City defender Caglar Soyuncu, who has experienced a disappointing Euro 2020 campaign with Turkey.
According to Turkish journalist Ekrem Konur, as cited by the Express, both Chelsea and Manchester United are interested in the Leicester ace, who has made a real name for himself in the Premier League since joining the Foxes back in 2018 from German outfit Freiburg.
He has cemented himself as one of the best defenders in the league in the last few seasons and played a key role in helping the Midlands club finish fifth in the Premier League this season and win the FA Cup.
Soyuncu, who is valued at £40.5million, according to transfer specialists transfermarkt, is being targeted by Chelsea and United, as both clubs look to bolster their defensive options ahead of the 2021/22 season.
Should Chelsea get themselves involved in a real battle with United to land the Turkish international and win the race for his signature, the deal would almost certainly earn the thumbs up from Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan.
That is because, back in January 2020, the City star heaped praise on Soyuncu’s shoulders, insisting that, at that time, only Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk was the better performing centre-back in the Premier League.
As quoted by the Manchester Evening News, Gundogan, speaking at the start of last year, said: “I agree with the general opinion of the football public. In this season, Caglar Soyuncu had the best performance in the Premier League after Van Dijk.
“I didn’t know him before. We met when we met in matches. In addition to the Premier League games two seasons ago, we also matched with Leicester City in a cup. We became competitors in many matches. We always saw and talked to each other.
“We started getting to know each other. His football understanding and character are also very good. His performances for both Leicester and the national team have been good.”
Whilst raving about Soyuncu’s qualities, Gundogan admitted that he would like to see Pep Guardiola add him to City’s squad.
He added: “The first thing that comes to my mind about the Turkish player I want to see in Manchester City is Caglar.”
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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Considering City had centre-backs such as Aymeric Laporte and John Stones on their books at the time, it speaks volumes about just how much Gundogan thought of Soyuncu.
The 25-year-old has massively improved since working under Brendan Rodgers at the King Power Stadium, offering belief that he could take his game to the next level if he was to make the switch to Stamford Bridge and work with Tuchel.
But considering he is likely to cost big money, and Chelsea are prioritising other signings, it remains to be seen whether or not the Blues will make a formal move for the Leicester ace.