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Aston Villa closing in on Lucas Digne; Chelsea ‘not pursuing’ as Emerson the priority — reports

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Chelsea FC v Atletico Madrid - UEFA Champions League Round Of 16 Leg Two Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Lucas Digne looks set to move from Everton to Aston Villa this month, with the two teams reportedly in advanced negotiations over what is expected to be £20-25m transfer, as per Sky Sports. While the transfer is not yet finalized, things look to be moving in the right direction and they could be settled by the end of next week.

Regardless of timing, what’s more pertinent for us here is that Digne isn’t anywhere close to a Chelsea move at the moment, with the Blues apparently not pursuing the 28-year-old after our initial reported interest. Everton are looking to collect a transfer fee, and we’re supposedly just looking for a loan solution (if that), while Digne himself might prefer Villa as well — all of which probably made this pretty much a non-starter.

At the moment, this leaves Chelsea all-in on the Emerson recall train, which might require some creative solutions (i.e. extra compensation) to get Lyon to play ball. They paid €500k in loan fees (with another €500k in bonuses), and have a €15m buy-option as well. Emerson, who’s been practically ever-present for the midtable Ligue 1 side, did sign a new contract with Chelsea through 2024 before leaving and retains Tuchel’s favor.

“We know Em and appreciate Em as a player and a person. He had such a huge influence – even though he didn’t have a lot of minutes last season – because he is a top guy and a top professional. He is still a Chelsea player but it is not only what I wish for, we need to evaluate the situation.

“We are looking into it on this position and he is one of the options. I will not comment further.”

-Thomas Tuchel; source: Football.London

Barcelona’s Sergiño Dest has also been linked, but he looks a far less likely option at the moment.