Chelsea’s chase for Romelu Lukaku is all but over, after Everton refused to play ball in the Blues’ chase for the Belgian striker.
The Toffees rate their man at £75 million, but Chelsea have been desperately trying to get Ronald Koeman’s side to budge on their fee, as they offered closer to £50 million, and even tried to throw in Asmir Begovic and Loic Remy.
So, with a reunion seemingly off the cards, Antonio Conte is ready to turn to Inter Milan striker Mauro Icardi, who has been linked with an exit all summer.
The 23-year-old was rumoured to be interesting Arsenal earlier this summer, but the move broke down when Arsene Wenger realised he’d cost actual money and backed out.
Icardi’s agent and wife, Wanda Nara, said earlier this summer that Inter had put her client/husband up for sale, and Atletico Madrid were sniffing around him.
But Atleti dropped out after signing Kevin Gameiro from Sevilla, and that leaves Chelsea in pole position if they want the Argentine forward.
He’ll cost though, with £50 million the rumoured fee for the man who scored 14 goals in Serie A last season.
However, Chelsea may capitalise on Inter’s managerial situation in the move, with the Nerazzurri sacking Roberto Mancini and replacing him with Frank de Boer after losing to Tottenham Hotspur 6-1 in a pre season friendly.
Conte is well aware of Icardi’s talent, having faced him while Juventus boss numerous times over the years.
And he sees the former Barcelona youth team player as the perfect player to lead the Chelsea line this season, with Diego Costa looking increasingly likely to leave once a new striker arrives.
Looks like £50 million is the standard price for anyone this summer…