Chelsea and Manchester United are reportedly vying for the signature of Ousmane Dembele, who is set to leave Barcelona this year.

According to a report by Spanish outlet Fichajes, Ousmane Dembele is becoming a highly coveted player in the transfer market following the announcement that he will be leaving Barcelona soon. The French international is a target for Chelsea and Manchester United, with a Bosman move in the summer likely.

Ousmane Dembele joined Barcelona from Borussia Dortmund in August 2017 amid a lot of hype. But the 24-year-old’s stint with the Blaugrana will be remembered as a case of “what could have been” as a spate of injuries hampered his progress enormously.

The fitness issues have unsurprisingly plagued the French attacker this season too, and he has managed just 684 minutes of game time across 11 appearances as a result. And Dembele’s time at Camp Nou appears to be coming to an acrimonious end, with Barcelona recently announcing that he will not be signing a new contract.

The Catalan giants prefer to offload him in the ongoing transfer window to recoup something from his departure. Dembele’s precarious situation has captured the attention of Manchester United and Chelsea.

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The Red Devils hold a long-standing interest in Dembele, having made previous attempts to secure his services. But the continued interest from Manchester United is surprising despite Jadon Sancho’s struggles this season.

While Anthony Martial is expected to depart Old Trafford sooner or later, Anthony Elanga’s emergence coupled with Mason Greenwood’s growing stature means there is no need to sign a wide-attacker. But it looks like Manchester United will be pursuing a January move for Dembele, although they will now have to fend off competition from Chelsea to sign the Barcelona contract rebel.

Like Manchester United, the Blues have contacted Dembele over a possible transfer. And unlike their Premier League rivals, Chelsea might need to bolster their attacking unit amid uncertainties surrounding the futures of Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner.

Both Chelsea and Manchester United are planning a January swoop, but they might have to wait until the summer to secure his services. Shortly after Barcelona’s announcement, Dembele insisted that he is fully committed to the club and is focusing on delivering wins for his side. A Bosman move in the summer is thus the likelier outcome if the impasse continues.

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