Chelsea have reportedly set their sights on teenage Russian midfielder Arsen Zakharyan, who is also on the radars of German outfit RB Leipzig.
According to a report from Russian outlet Sport-Express, Chelsea are interested in 18-year-old midfielder Arsen Zakharyan, who plays for Dynamo Moscow and is also being targeted by Bundesliga club RB Leipzig.
Zakharyan, a central midfielder by trade, signed for the Dynamo Moscow academy back in January 2017 and has since made rapid strides. Having been promoted to the club’s B team last season, he made such an impression in a short time that he was fast-tracked into the senior side. And the teenager did not disappoint, finishing the campaign with four goals and six assists in 13 games.
Zakharyan has started the new season on an impressive note as well, already scoring and assisting one goal apiece in three league outings in 2021/22. It is this rapid progress that has seemingly put him on the radars of Chelsea, as well as RB Leipzig.
The Blues have a quality midfield unit led by the brilliant duo of N’Golo Kante and Jorginho, with Mateo Kovacic and Ruben Loftus-Cheek providing cover. In addition, promising youngsters Billy Gilmour and Conor Gallagher will also be options next season when they return from their respective loan spells.
Chelsea did, however, lose a bright academy prospect in Lewis Bate this summer, who ended up signing for Premier League rivals Leeds United on a permanent basis. And someone like Zakharyan could be a direct replacement for the young midfielder should he make the jump to the west London outfit this summer.
Even though first-team football would be unlikely for him immediately, Zakharyan could either develop with the reserves or go out on loan before carving out a place for himself at Stamford Bridge.
Another aspect that might be appealing for Chelsea is that the 18-year-old has played as a right-sided midfielder with the Dynamo Moscow first-team regularly and could be seen as an option for the wing-back role in Thomas Tuchel’s team.
The report adds that Zakharyan has a buyout clause of €12 million, only valid for clubs outside Russia. The value will increase to €15 million next year. With RB Leipzig also keen and his contract running till 2024, it remains to be seen if Chelsea do make an attempt to land the 18-year-old midfield starlet.