English Premier League (EPL) club Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is looking to bolster his defense and his latest interest is Burnley center-back Michael Keane. The Italian believes that the former Manchester United youth academy product could be the long-time replacement to club legend John Terry.
The Blues have reportedly made an inquiry on the player’s availability. The Chelsea hierarchy is prepared to pay a transfer fee of $32.53 million on the player. It is believed that Keane will be able to bolster the inconsistent Chelsea backline, as reported by David McDonnell of the Mirror.
Chelsea is not the only club who has shown interest in the player. Current Premier League champions Leicester City also enquirer about the player during the recently concluded summer transfer window. They reportedly tabled a $19.51 million bid for the player which Burnley rejected.
Chelsea were atrocious defensively last season. The Blues conceded a total of 53 goals which resulted in them being involved in the worst Premier League championship defense ever. Conte brought in a number of defensive players over the summer. The likes of Marcos Alonso and David Luiz were brought in to provide stability at the back.
However, Alonso was largely unproven and Luiz is always unreliable. This has shown this season as the club was exposed to a 3-0 humiliation by Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium, last week.
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Current central defenders Branislav Ivanovic and Gary Cahill are not favored by Conte and both the players are likely to be excluded from the club’s future plans. The Italian manager wants to bring two new central defenders over the upcoming transfer windows as well as a new full-back.
The Blues are desperate to bring in fresh blood at the club to reduce their dependency on 35-year-old John Terry. They have identified Keane as one of those defenders.
Here is a video highlighting the talents of the player.
Video courtesy: Scouting Football/YouTube.com
Photo courtesy: Catherine Kõrtsmik/Wikimedia