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Young Benfica defender shuts down Chelsea interest

Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images

Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly continues to be Chelsea's main transfer target at the moment, but with Napoli unlikely to accept any offer, the Blues have started to look at alternative plans to reinforce the defence. One of these plans is rumoured to be Benfica centre back Victor Lindelöf, who, like Koulibaly, is also able to feature as a right back.

But while Lindelöf does have a €30 million release clause that Chelsea could theoretically meet (even if Benfica might make it harder by having the Blues pay the full incidental costs, like taxes, with such a transaction), the player himself does not think it's the right time to leave.

"I like Benfica, a club where I have been for the last four years. I'm still developing as a player. And because of that, I will stay."

-Victor Lindelöf; Source: Record

At Benfica, the 22-year-old Swedish international made 15 starts in the second half of last season, and was instrumental in their Portuguese League title-winning effort. Lindelöf could be looking to further his development as a player - as well as add more titles under his belt - before making a big-money switch out of Estádio da Luz.

From the Chelsea perspective, this might be a blessing in disguise.  While going after the likes of Koulibaly, fully developed players with multiple years of top level experience makes sense -- the defence needs help now -- Lindelöf has just started establishing his credentials.  While that doesn't necessarily rule him out from being amazing or making an impact, with Andreas Christensen ready for a Chelsea career next summer and Kurt Zouma set to return from injury in a few months, clogging up the pipeline with Lindelöf might not be the best move.

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