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Chelsea to pursue 29-year-old breakout star if Azpilicueta leaves

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Jonathan Clauss of Lens on Chelsea's radar.

Transfer News: Chelsea set sights on Lens right-back Jonathan Clauss

Jonathan Clauss has been identified by Chelsea for the right-back spot if the Blues lose Cesar Azpilicueta this summer. Lens have set an £8.5m valuation on the French international and would be willing to sell if the price is met, according to La Voix du Nord (h/t Metro).

With a year remaining on his contract, the 29-year-old has had a breakout season in France, making it to the Ligue 1 Team of the Season. He contributed with 11 assists and 5 goals in the 2021/22 season. Other top European clubs are also interested in acquiring his service.

Jonathan Clauss is a target for Chelsea this summer.
Jonathan Clauss is a target for Chelsea this summer. 13/02/2021 AnthonyBIBARD/FEP/Panoramic PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxFRAxITAxBEL

Clauss a viable alternative for Chelsea

Clauss was recently handed his first cap for the French national team after Didier Deschamp noticed his impressive performances for Lens. The French club finished 7th in Ligue 1 and the right-back played an important role in securing that place.

With Azpilicueta pushing for a move to Barcelona, the right-back spot needs some attention, with Reece James the only viable option for that spot. And the French international can be the perfect replacement for the Spanish full-back. The 29-year-old could provide James with the necessary competition and rest.

A possible deal hinges on Azpilicueta’s future at the club, though. Although, it will be interesting to see whether Clauss opts for a switch to the Bridge.

With the World Cup at the end of the year, he would naturally want to be the first name on the team sheet, which looks unlikely as the Blues have James in that position. The England international will possibly be Tuchel’s first choice, barring an injury.

Chelsea have been keeping tabs on RC Lens star Jonathan Clauss.
Chelsea have been keeping tabs on RC Lens star Jonathan Clauss. ( EP/Panoramic PUBLICATION)

But During an interview with RMC Sport (via The Sun) in May, when asked about the club he dreamt of joining, Clauss said:

“Since I was a kid, It’s Chelsea and it remains Chelsea.”

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There may be some doubts, but this feels like the right time for the French international to realise his dream of playing for the Blues. The fans will welcome his addition with open arms as his qualities in the attacking third will be instrumental if he’s chosen as a backup to James.

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