Chelsea are considering making a move for Barcelona defender Aleix Vidal when the summer transfer window opens, as per reports.
Spanish journal AS have reported that Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has set his sights on Aleix Vidal as a possible wing-back reinforcement for the summer, and has instructed the Blues to line up a move for the Barcelona defender when the transfer window reopens in June.
Aleix Vidal hasn’t had an enjoyable career with Barcelona by any stretch of imagination. Signed from La Liga rivals Sevilla in the summer of 2015, Vidal arrived at Camp Nou with a growing reputation of a player who is an asset to his team with his versatility.
However, the Spaniard had to bide his time before he was allowed to make his debut for Barcelona with the Blaugrana in the middle of serving a transfer ban. But even after making his belated debut for the La Liga heavyweights, Vidal hasn’t been able to carve out a regular place for himself in Luis Enrique’s first team plans.
That was visible for large parts of the 2016/17 season as well, as Vidal struggled for game time, only making six starts in all competitions with the Barcelona boss favouring Sergi Roberto as his right-back. However, just when it looked like he was going to resurrect his Barcelona career, fate struck a cruel blow.
Vidal suffered a horrific injury to his ankle two weeks ago and the 27-year-old has been ruled out for the remainder of the season as a result. Barcelona are already in the hunt for a replacement for Vidal, and should they manage to sign a right-back permanently, the Spaniard could soon be on his way out of Camp Nou.
Should that happen, Chelsea will be lying in wait to sign Vidal, with Antonio Conte identifying him as a preferred target for the wing-back slot, despite the injury setback. Conte knows that he needs to bolster his options across the park if Chelsea are to compete on all four fronts next season.
And defensive reinforcements is the top priority for the Blues boss, having already eyed several options to provide competition to Victor Moses and Marcos Alonso next season. Vidal, with his versatility is just the kind of player that Conte needs in his back line as he provides solidity at the back as well as verve in attack.
A move for Vidal could, thus, be in the offing when the transfer window reopens in June. It now remains to be seen how things shape up in the next few months.