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No progress in Dzeko, Emerson deals with Roma, so Chelsea start looking at alternatives

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France v Wales - International friendly match
The alternative is more Hennessey
Photo by Dave Winter/Icon Sport

Thursday was supposed to bring clarity and perhaps even a conclusion to Chelsea’s pursuit of Roma pair Emerson Palmieri and Edin Dzeko, with the former supposedly all agreed and just waiting to sign and the latter possibly getting close as well. As you will have no doubt noticed, Thursday brought neither. Thursdays are of course the worst days, so that’s not surprising. In fact, combined with the newly exploding angst surrounding Antonio Conte’s future, it’s brought anything but clarity.

In (as it turns out visa-less) Dzeko’s case that’s understandable, since it seems like Conte’s very much pushing for that deal (despite what he might claim). The Emerson signing seems like a good idea in and of itself, regardless of who might be the head coach however.

Not that it matters since neither look done at this moment, and while I personally would not mind if we didn’t waste money on Dzeko, Marcos Alonso is in dire need of a proper backup, especially after non-proper backup Kenedy left on loan to Newcastle this week and not-yet-proper backup Baba Rahman is about to do the same to Schalke 04.

In that vein, perhaps to motivate the deal along or as an actual fall-back option, Chelsea have apparently inquired about PSG’s Layvin Kurzawa. The 25-year-old French international, who was PSG’s starting left back last season (until his season ended a couple months early with a knee injury), has been stuck in a timeshare this season with former discarded Spurs youngster Yuri Berchiche — though Kurzawa has played every minute in the Champions League.

There is no price tag put on the inquiry just yet, and by definition an inquiry hardly constitutes a transfer, so Chelsea are making sure that there is an alternative option in case the Emerson deal falls through. Previous stories claimed that it was going to be allowed to complete either as part of a Dzeko deal or on its own, though some now claim the latter isn’t actually true.

As far as the Dzeko alternative, Di Marzio, who’s the primary source reporting the Kurzawa thing as well, claims that Chelsea made a pass at Olivier Giroud, but of course Arsenal rejected that loan proposition, which they would’ve done regardless of circumstance, methinks. We might have done them a favor with Petr Čech, but don’t hold your breath for any favors in return.

Both Kurzawa and Giroud sound very much like agents agenting in the Roma double-deal, throwing out alternative names in hopes of pushing the negotiations to their conclusion. Di Marzio says Thursday was spent in “grueling” talks. Friday will presumably bring more of the same, though a conclusion is a “possibility”.