Transfer News: Chelsea Join Arsenal In The Race To Sign Defender Who Could Add The Much-needed Steel At The Back

Chelsea are weighing up a January transfer swoop for Burnley defender James Tarkowski, according to reports. Arsenal are also reported to be in the mix too. The London clubs are desperate to strengthen their defence next month and have identified several options.

The Manchester-born centre-back has been a rock at the back for the high-flying Burnley this season. Despite the sale of Michael Keane to Everton in the summer, Sean Dyche’s men have looked defensively solid and Tarkowski has easily stepped into the shoes of the departed Keane.

The Clarets sit 7th in the table after their 2-2 draw against Manchester United yesterday. The key to their impressive form has been their defensive solidity and they have conceded just 17 goals in the league, further demonstrating the 25-year-old centre-back’s contributions this campaign.

According to the Daily Star, Chelsea are keeping tabs on the £30million-rated centre-half. Blues boss Antonio Conte is keen to get the Burnley man in the winter transfer window but faces competition from London rivals Arsenal.

Tarkowski, who was bought by Burnley from Brentford in February last year, still has 18 months left on his current contract. It is believed that the central defender will not renew his contract with the Clarets as he is in search of a new adventure. However, manager Sean Dyche would be reluctant to let his star man go.

Nevertheless, the defender has made no indication of wanting to jump ship and is committed to his Burnley team-mates.

Tarkowski served the first game of a three-match ban when Burnley lost 3-0 to Spurs. He also missed the trip to Manchester United on the Boxing Day and will miss Huddersfield Town clash on Saturday, having been punished for elbowing Brighton’s Glenn Murray.

The meteoric rise of Tarkowski has seen some of the Premier League heavyweights sit and take notice. One of them is Chelsea and Conte looks determined to have the defender in January transfer window.

The defender is rated at £30million but our gaffer will have to seriously pour in more money if he wants to have him in the squad next month. Dyche would apparently stop Tarkowski from leaving Burnley in January for such a low fee but if our board coughs up more penny, who knows what will happen?

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