Chelsea and Manchester City are reportedly looking at bringing Nice midfielder Jean-Michael Seri over to the Premier League.
According to The Sun, Chelsea and Manchester City are looking towards OGC Nice midfielder Jean-Michael Seri as a potential addition to their respective squads. The Ivory Coast international is on the radar of the two Premier League clubs, who are both eyeing a January move for the player.
Jean-Michael Seri’s is a curious case. One can either call the midfielder a late bloomer or perhaps a one-season wonder. The player rose to prominence after a brilliant 2016-17 Ligue 1 campaign, one which saw Nice emerge as genuine title contenders before settling for third.
Seri drew interest from the likes of Barcelona, PSG and many others. And with the 26-year-old continuing to impress this season, Chelsea and Manchester City seem to have joined the chase for the player, with both the clubs looking to reinforce their midfield in January.
At Chelsea, the need for addition of a midfielder is paramount. Summer arrival Tiemoue Bakayoko, who was expected to mitigate Nemanja Matic’s departure, has failed to lift up his game and establish himself at Stamford Bridge.
— Transfer Centre Live (@TransferCenLive) January 13, 2018
Ross Barkley has been brought in by Chelsea in January. But, the player is expected to be deputised in a more attacking role, which means the need for another central midfielder is still present. Seri, with his industrious nature, could finally be the foil that is able to truly replace Matic at the club.
Manchester City, on the other hand, are spoilt for options in midfield. But, most of them are creative, with Fernandinho perhaps the only one that could be classified as a player who could play the pivot role or the role of an anchor man in midfield. This is where Seri could come in, especially with Fernandinho already 32.
The Nice midfielder reportedly has a £35 million release clause embedded in his contract, one that runs till 2019. The amount does seem more than fair, given the current inflated condition of the market and neither team would baulk at the fee.
— ChelsTransfer (@ChelsTransfer) January 17, 2018
The move could really boil down to Guardiola’s intent on adding to his options in midfield mid-season. Conte does seem desperate to add to his squad and Chelsea could deliver the Ivory Coast international as a token signing in order to ease the tension building the manager and the Board over transfer failures.
Also, we might just see Conte retain the 3-5-2 formation, if Seri arrives, with the player proving the foil to N’Golo Kante’s box-to-box nature with ideally, in his own time, Barkley being given the freedom to venture forward. While it hardly looks so, Seri could prove to be the catalyst of a season that seems to be winding down real quick.