Chelsea are one of the many clubs interested in signing Arsenal youngster Khayon Edwards, as per the Secret Scout, the Daily Mail, Arsenal Youth and the Daily Cannon. The 18-year-old is still just on a scholarship with the Gunners, and has yet to sign his professional contract. (Players can sign pro terms at 17.)
Edwards has apparently rejected three contract proposals from Arsenal, seemingly upset at the lack of opportunities given to him at the U23 level with Folarin Balogun and Mika Biereth ahead of him in the pecking order, and is thus concerned about his pathway to senior football.
Chelsea are said to have made an enquiry, while the likes of Bayer Leverkusen, RB Leipzig, Hertha BSC, Borussia Monchengladbach, Newcastle United, Aston Villa, Leeds United, Southampton, Brighton, Ajax and Feyenoord are all said to be interested as well.
Edwards has scored 9 goals and provided 5 assists in 12 appearances across the U18 Premier League and the EFL trophy this season, and has also trained with the senior team.
Chelsea are in pole position to sign former Manchester United prospect Deji Sotona in January, as per Football Insider. The 19-year-old, who has 18 months left on his contract, joined OGC Nice two summers ago, but as the Telegraph note, he is now looking to return to England, just like his former manager, Patrick Viera did last summer. Chelsea supposedly already tried to sign Sotona at the same time, but will now face competition from Tottenham, Celtic, Brentford and Everton.
Sotona has not made his senior professional debut yet. He’s primarily a left winger, but can also play as a centre forward. He was said to be the fastest player at Manchester United back in the day, after he was recorded reaching a speed of 22.9 mph.
Southampton are reportedly leading the race for Chelsea-target, Mohamed Ali-Cho. The SCO Angers centre forward is in demand after making 18 appearances for his side this season, despite being only 17 years of age.
Ali-Cho, who was previously at PSG and Everton’s academies, has been scouted extensively by Chelsea, but Saints are confident that they can entice him with the prospect of first-team football. The France U21 international has a dual English and French and is apparently valued at £20m, with his current contract running through 2023.
Meanwhile, previously linked Chelsea target James Beadle has reportedly chosen to join Brighton. The Seagulls were our main competitors in the race for the 17-year-old highly rated goalkeeper’s signature, who was instrumental in Charlton Athletic winning the Professional Development League 2 South title last season.
The England U17 international will move for a nominal sum since he hadn’t signed a professional contract. It’s probably the right move for him considering Brighton’s youth program and their better pathway to the senior team.