Chelsea's search for a quality left back got a bit more difficult after the news of PSG agreeing a €25m transfer for Alex Telles. While the 27-year-old wasn’t at the top of our wishlist, he was one of the more reasonably priced options in the market.
Fortunately, he’s not the only one.
In a possibly not coincidental bit of timing, Matt Law of the Telegraph reports that another 27-year-old left back just might be available, and for just about the same price as well! Apparently Ajax Amsterdam have offered Chelsea the opportunity to sign Nicolás Tagliafico for £22.4m (so €25m), which would make him the second Ajax player to join Chelsea this summer after the already agreed transfer of Hakim Ziyech.
It is believed that Tagliafico would be interested in bringing his skill to the Premier League and the relatively low price tag could very well Chelsea into making a bid. While Lampard’s primary target reportedly remains Ben Chilwell, the fee that Leicester are expected to demand would be well north of £40m (if not twice that).
Chelsea told they could sign Ajax left-back Nicolas Tagliafico for £22.4m fee @Matt_Law_DT #CFC https://t.co/AnmBjSIQcW— Telegraph Football (@TeleFootball) May 27, 2020
Marcos Alonso is apparently the one who would make way, with the younger Emerson staying to compete with the new signing (be that Tagliafico or somebody else). Neither Emerson nor Alonso have managed to hold down the left back spot at Chelsea this season, with César Azpilicueta preferred in all non-wing-back formations.
Tagliafico has been playing in Ajax's famed “Total Football” system for the past 2.5 seasons, scoring a dozen goals in almost 100 appearances, which would certainly suit Lampard’s tactics. The 25-times capped Argentina international is described as a "hard worker on the pitch with good defensive nous”.
While the transition from the Eredevisie to the Premier League is not guaranteed to be smooth, Chelsea could do worse than purchase a good player in his prime like Tagliafico.