Specualtion’s growing that Atlético Madrid midfielder Saúl Ñíguez, who’s still only 26 somehow, wants to leave the club this summer, and that has unsurprisingly alerted many teams around Europe, Chelsea including as per latest reports. Alongside the Blues, PSG, Bayern Munich, Manchester United, and Juventus are all said to be monitoring his situation, though nothing more serious has taken place just yet.
Saúl Ñíguez puede dejar al Atletico de Madrid este verano, es cierto. PSG y Chelsea están muy atentos a el pero nada avanzado aún. También el Bayern de Munich tiene interés, de momento nada más— Matteo Moretto (@MatteMoretto) June 3, 2021
Saúl could leave Atlético Madrid this summer. FC Bayern are interested but no official bid yet, Chelsea are also informed on Saúl situation. Open race and no advanced negotiations yet. Atléti are already in talks for Rodrigo de Paul as potential replacement. #Atleti #CFC— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) June 4, 2021
According to Marca, Atlético may even be willing to let Saúl go — and perhaps for something less than his gargantuan €150m release clause despite having five (5!) more years left on a massive nine-year contract (9!) he signed in 2017 — as the player apparently doesn’t feel as important under Diego Simeone as he used to anymore, and wants to embark on a new challenge.
Meanwhile, fellow midfielder Tiémoué Bakayoko may not be staying at Napoli permanently, but he’s unlikely to ever return to Chelsea. He’s recently been linked with Fiorentina, who appointed his former coach at Napoli (and previously AC Milan as well), Gennaro Gattuso as their new head coach just recently. According to Gianluca Di Marzio and Fabrizio Romano, Gattuso is keen on that relationship continuing as well, and has asked the club to sign the 26-year-old.
La Viola have apparently initiated contact with Chelsea regarding a move, but unfortunately, they can only afford to take him on loan, which is a problem since his contract expires next summer. Chelsea could of course extend his contract before sending him on loan, again, but we need to start trimming the Loan Army, especially when it comes to older players, with FIFA’s new loan regulations set to come into effect in 2022 as well.