Chelsea are reportedly in for Spanish veteran goalkeeper, Pepe Reina and readying a £9 million offer for the player who only joined AC Milan few days earlier.
Chelsea’s search for a new goalkeeper is no secret, but they are now linked with a bizarre move for former Liverpool star Pepe Reina and the Stamford Bridge outfit are readying a 9 million move for the goalkeeper. According to The Sun, Chelsea are much closer to completing the deal than believed and are ready to make the Spaniard their new No.1
Interestingly, Reina only moved to new club AC Milan few days ago from Napoli on a free transfer, and now Chelsea are prepared to pay £9 million to secure his services. The move will also reunite with former Napoli and new Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri.
The idea behind this move is speculated to be that Chelsea are looking at an experienced head to become their new No.1 and Sarri, having previously coached Reina at Napoli, seems to trust the player enough to hand him the first choice spot for next season.
The basis of the move is due to Thibaut Courtois’ expected departure in the coming days away from the club, with a €35 million move to Real Madrid being mooted to happen in the coming days. Courtois’ departure would leave Chelsea with just Willy Caballero as their first-team goalkeeper, and Sarri thus wants Reina between the posts.
Chelsea know that Courtois is not going to sign a new contract with the club and hence are looking at various options including young goalkeepers like Jack Butland and Everton’s Jordan Pickford to fill the void. However, in the case wherein they fail to land any of their younger targets, Chelsea are seemingly okay with making a signing for the short term.
In that scenario, Reina fits the bill perfectly. The Spaniard knows the English game very well, having represented Liverpool for eight years during his spell here. There were also reports of Chelsea targeting beleaguered former Manchester City No.1 Joe Hart in a £5 million deal. But, the Blues seem to be fixated on landing Reina instead, at least for the time being.
Reina, since leaving Liverpool back in 2013, has had spells at Napoli and Bayern Munich, although he hardly played for the Bavarians during his period there, as he always was the understudy to Manuel Neuer. He returned to Napoli last season and went on to put in a significant shift, which saw him being selected as Spain’s third choice keeper for the World Cup in Russia.
The other big question that remains is would AC Milan sell a player who they only signed a few days back? There could be possibilities, as AC Milan are reported to be cash strapped and could make do with the £9 million Chelsea are reportedly offering, as FFP sanctions loom over their head.
Signing Reina would make total sense for Chelsea, who might be priced out of a move for some of their younger goalkeeping targets. Reina’s experience and Sarri’s trust in him would go a long way from securing the goalkeeping spot in the short term, till Chelsea make a long-term signing for that position, probably next season.