Chelsea’s interest in Kounde ‘likely’ to hinge on Zouma exit

Chelsea’s interest in Sevilla defender Jules Kounde is ‘likely’ to hinge on a potential exit for Kurt Zouma.

Thomas Tuchel’s side are interested in signing Kounde before the closure of the transfer window on August 31, but a deal is dependent on the west Londoners freeing space in their squad with the sale of a senior centre-back.


Zouma has been linked with an exit throughout the summer after falling out of favour at Stamford Bridge, with the France international subject of interest from West Ham, Tottenham and Everton.

The Hammers are prepared to meet the defender’s £30m asking price and Zouma is understood to want to remain in London, though The Athletic are reporting that personal terms are proving problematic.

Zouma is demanding a ‘significant’ increase on his current wages to a figure of around £125,000-a-week, a deal that would make the centre-back comfortably the highest-paid player at the London Stadium.

West Ham are working towards a compromise as the club seek to avoid upsetting their wage structure, and David Moyes’ side remain favourites for Zouma’s signature despite reported interest from Tottenham.

According to the report in The Athletic, Chelsea‘s move for Kounde will ‘likely’ depend on whether Zouma departs before the transfer deadline, with the Blues’ well-stocked at centre-back with the impressive emergence of academy graduate Trevoh Chalobah adding another option to their ranks.

Sevilla were interested in signing Zouma as part of Chelsea’s initial talks for Kounde, though the Frenchman is said to prefer to remain in the Premier League.

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