Premier League side Chelsea are targeting AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma to replace current number one Thibault Courtois if he leaves Stamford Bridge this summer.
Courtois looks set to leave Chelsea this summer, with Real Madrid in pole position to snap up the Belgian, with a £35.5 million deal likely, according to the London Evening Standard.
While Chelsea are becoming increasingly resigned to losing their number one, they won’t sell until they have a replacement in place.
There are several names in the frame, with AC Milan’s Italian stopper Gianluigi Donnarumma believed to be at the top of the list.
The 19-year-old, who has already started more than 100 Serie A games, could be available, as he has had a fractious relationship with fans there who objected to his protracted contract negotiations. He has also spoken in the past about a desire to leave.
AC Milan’s sporting director Massimiliano Mirabelli has said that he could be allowed to leave. “If a good enough offer arrived, any of our players could be sold,” he said. There are far richer clubs out there and we have to choose other paths.”
If he were to go, he could fetch up to £30 million – at 19 he is by no means at the peak of his career – but that would be well within Chelsea’s financial range.
However, it is understood that other goalkeepers are also being considered. They include Petr Cech, who is seemingly surplus to requirements at Arsenal. He played at Stamford Bridge for a decade so could welcome a return, although he would surely only be a stop-gap for a season or two, given his age.
Another possibility is Leicester City stopper Kasper Schmeichel. He has attracted interest from clubs this summer after some impressive performances for Denmark at the World Cup. Leicester have also just signed keeper Danny Ward from Liverpool, which could mean they are preparing for life without their current number one.