Torino have reportedly knocked back a £63 million bid from Chelsea for star striker Andrea Belotti
According to a report by The Sun, Chelsea have had their initial offer of £63 million turned down by Torino. The Serie A club are adamant that they won’t let their star striker leave for anything less than his £88 million release clause, although they are eager to keep hold of the Italian.
Belotti enjoyed a sensational rise to prominence last season as he set the Serie A scoring charts on fire. The player found the back of the net 26 times in addition to providing eight assists in the Italian top flight last season. And his scoring rate of 118 minutes per goal was only bettered by Dries Mertens and Edin Dzeko.
His exploits have seen him being labelled as the future of Italian football, and the player has rightly become a regular fixture in the Italian national side. Moreover, Belotti has been attracting the attention of the who’s who of European football, with a host of top clubs linked to him in recent months.
Chelsea are well known admirers of the player with Antonio Conte following his progress for a long time. And the Premier League champions have stepped up their interest in Belotti in recent weeks with the Italian manager eager to bolster his squad before the transfer window slams shut.
Antonio Conte wants Andrea Belotti at Chelsea. However, Roman Abramovich is refusing to pay the €100m release clause. (Source: Tuttosport) pic.twitter.com/UQqYcVQfAt
— Transfer News Live (@DeadlineDayLive) August 17, 2017
Conte has been quite outspoken about the issues with his squad, particularly the glaring lack of depth across various positions. Hence, the Blues have been rumoured to be in hot pursuit of several targets, with Belotti re-emerging as the latest player being eyed by the club.
Diego Costa’s exile from the squad has left Michy Batshuayi and summer arrival Alvaro Morata as the only two strikers at the Conte’s disposal. While the Spanish striker began his Chelsea career with a bang – a goal and an assist on his debut – it has been anything but plain sailing for Batshuayi.
Therefore, Belotti has rightly been identified as a viable target to pursue in the climactic period of the summer transfer window. Morata’s versatility makes him an option to play as one of the two inside forwards in Conte’s side, thus, potentially ironing out issues pertaining to depth in attack.
Belotti, with his strong physique, dribbling and poaching abilities could fit in quickly to the challenges in the Premier League. And at 23, the player would be a long-term solution for the Blues. But Chelsea will have raise their offer if they are to stand a chance at securing the player’s services this summer.
Torino have swiftly rejected their initial £63 million bid, pointing towards his £88 million release clause. Thus, it now remains to be seen if Chelsea meet the aforementioned amount to land Belotti before the transfer window closes in less than two weeks.