Chelsea Transfer News: Lazio plan Emerson Palmieri and Ruben Loftus-Cheek double-swoop
Lazio are interested in Chelsea duo Emerson Palmieri and Ruben Loftus-Cheek, as both players remain linked with an exit this summer.
According to Corriere dello Sport (h/t Football London), Lazio sporting director Igli Tale is in London to enter formal negotiations with Chelsea for the pair after their struggles for regular gametime with the Blues.
Emerson joined the Blues midway through the 17/18 season and spent last season on loan at Olympique Lyonnais. He played regularly for Les Gones and notched 36 appearances across all competitions.
The Euro 2020-winning left-back however is unlikely to play a significant role in Thomas Tuchel’s future plans, hence a departure seems imminent.
On the other hand, Loftus-Cheek’s association with Chelsea has been a life-long one. Joining the Chelsea academy when he was only eight years old, the 26-year-old has spent the entirety of his football career as a Chelsea player.
He had loan spells at Crystal Palace and Fulham, and was tipped by many to play a key figure in Chelsea’s midfield for many years to come.
However, long spells on the sidelines due to numerous injuries have marred his development along the way and has potentially prevented him from reaching his absolute peak.
Both Emerson and Loftus-Cheek have worked with Lazio boss Maurizio Sarri during the Italian’s only season in charge at Stamford Bridge. Sarri is understood to be keen on a reunion with the pair.
Should the Blues let the pair leave?
Ruben Loftus-Cheek grew up at Chelsea, right in front of our very eyes. He is Cobham through and through. Emerson, on the other hand, is a very capable left-back who is more than decent enough to be playing a deputising role.
However, neither seem to be part of Tuchel’s plans and with Loftus-Cheek being 26 years of age and Emerson a year older, both players will have aspirations of playing regularly. If Marcos Alonso leaves, then it wouldn’t be a bad idea to keep the Italian here as backup.
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But then again, it remains to be seen if he would be open to such a role. Loftus-Cheek on the other hand has been playing a diminished squad role, and his minutes are likely to get even lesser if Conor Gallagher and Billy Gilmour make next season’s squad.
Lazio’s double-swoop means Chelsea could get some fee for them in return, which the Blues could reinvest to fund other, more necessary signings. The deal, should it happen, will be a win-win for everyone involved.
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