Chelsea’s winter move for Bundesliga defender Niklas Sule was put in jeopardy when Bayern Munich opened up talks with TSG Hoffenheim for the player.

However, the Blues have received a huge boost in their pursuit of the 21-year-old, as talks between the player’s representatives and the Bundesliga champions have stalled. Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness has recently stated that the two parties can’t agree on a transfer fee.

“There are still major problems,” he told German publication Kicker.

“The transfer fee could seriously jeopardise the deal.”

Hoffenheim are believed to be asking €25 million for Sule, and Bayern are not willing to pay that much, according to ESPN. Sule is under contract with Hoffenheim till 2019, but the report adds that the player is believed to have agreed terms to a five-year deal with Bayern.

Hoeness’ recent comments have put the move in doubt though, and this could be just the boost Chelsea need heading into the winter transfer window. The Blues were reportedly mulling a January move for Sule, and this will further strengthen their resolve to go ahead with the pursuit.

LEVERKUSEN, GERMANY - OCTOBER 22: Niklas Suele of Hoffenheim reacts after the Bundesliga match between Bayer 04 Leverkusen and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim at BayArena on October 22, 2016 in Leverkusen, Germany. (Photo by Lukas Schulze/Bongarts/Getty Images)

LEVERKUSEN, GERMANY – OCTOBER 22: Niklas Suele of Hoffenheim reacts after the Bundesliga match between Bayer 04 Leverkusen and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim at BayArena on October 22, 2016 in Leverkusen, Germany. (Photo by Lukas Schulze/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Chelsea are doing very well defensively after switching to manager Antonio Conte’s preferred 3-4-3 formation. The Blues have let in just two goals in 11 games, going on an unbeaten streak to consolidate their position at the top of the Premier League table.

The fact remains though that this isn’t the first choice back three that Conte wanted, despite the admirable job they’re doing. The last minute additions of David Luiz and Marcos Alonso turned out to be masterstrokes, but Chelsea will be looking to bolster their defence regardless.

Sule is just the latest in a long line of center-halves linked with the Blues. Most of them have been Serie A defenders, with the likes of Leonardo Bonucci of Juventus, Alessio Romagnoli of AC Milan and Antonio Rudiger of AS Roma all believed to be on the wishlist of Conte and Chelsea.

Sule has been a mainstay in the Hoffenheim side for the past couple of seasons, and could be an astute addition to the Chelsea side. With David Luiz, John Terry and Gary Cahill all on the wrong side of 30, a young center-half is definitely required at Stamford Bridge.

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