Chelsea have reportedly set their sights on Southampton captain James Ward-Prowse, who is also a target for Liverpool and Manchester United.
According to a report by Spanish outlet Fichajes, Chelsea are interested in signing James Ward-Prowse, with Thomas Tuchel an admirer of his talents. The 26-year-old is also being courted by Liverpool and Manchester United and is valued at around €50 million by Southampton.
James Ward-Prowse has been with Aston Villa since joining their academy as an eight-year-old back in 2003. Since then, he has come leaps and bounds and is now one of the first names on the team sheet. The English midfielder also became the club captain last year, nearly a decade after he broke into the first-team setup at St. Mary’s.
To date, Ward-Prowse has made 331 appearances for Southampton, chipping in with 35 goals and 42 assists along the way. His continued progress has captured the attention of several clubs over the years. And as things stand, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United are among his suitors.
The interest from Chelsea is interesting, considering Conor Gallagher and Billy Gilmour are touted for bright futures at Stamford Bridge while Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been winning Thomas Tuchel over with his performances. However, there have been suggestions that N’Golo Kante could be on his way out of the club soon while Saul Niguez looks unlikely to be signed permanently.
With that in mind, it looks like a good decision for Chelsea to keep an eye on Ward-Prowse, seeing as Gallagher is also attracting a few prospective suitors lately. As for Liverpool, they chose not to sign a replacement for Georginio Wijnaldum in the summer, although they did reportedly consider Ward-Prowse as an option.
With James Milner into the twilight of his career and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain facing an uncertain future at Anfield, making a move for someone like Ward-Prowse could be a step in the right direction for Liverpool. Finally, Manchester United come into the picture as well in pursuit of the 26-year-old, valued at around €50 million by Southampton.
That is because both Paul Pogba and Donny van de Beek have question marks surrounding their respective futures at Old Trafford. In Ward-Prowse, Manchester United might not have a like for like replacement for either player, but will still bring in a player who can introduce some defensive resolve to the midfield unit.
As iterated earlier, Southampton will demand €50 million for their captain, which appears to be a fair price following his renewal in August. What now remains to be seen is if any of Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United are prepared to meet Ward-Prowse’s €50 million valuation or if he stays put at St. Mary’s Stadium.