Chelsea’s pursuit of the Chicago Fire’s Gabriel “Gaga” Slonina dates back to at least January, and after a few delays and various other things out of our control, it looks we’re finally set to secure his signature.
According to Fabrizio Romano’s “exclusive”, the 18-year-old highly promising goalkeeper is set to fly to London today (Sunday) to complete the transfer, though he will then fly back to complete the 2022 MLS season with the Fire. It’s a bit unclear if, technically, this will be a loan back to the Fire or if the transfer itself will only go through on January 1, but that’s largely academic in the end (new FIFA loan rules and restrictions notwithstanding) and not something that will affect the squad much right now.
Chelsea will reportedly pay $15m including bonuses to the Fire, which is a bit more than the €10m rumored before, though the difference may be accounted for by the various bonuses and add-ons now included.
Slonina’s clearly one for the future, perhaps someone we hope can take over from Édouard Mendy down the road. Chelsea are making a relatively significant investment here, on par with the €9m deal for a 19-year-old Thibaut Courtois in 2011.
Excl: Gaga Slonina to Chelsea, here we go! Agreement with Chicago Fire for $15m, add-ons included. Talented GK and his agent will fly to London on Sunday to complete medical and sign. #CFC— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 30, 2022
Slonina will finish the season with Chicago before joining Chelsea on January 1. pic.twitter.com/g2l4Ksbsoj