Chelsea have reportedly began a move to try to take Jadon Sancho to Stamford Bridge – but they won’t pay the asking price.
The Daily Mirror reports that Liverpool, who have also been linked with the England international, are out of the race, leaving Chelsea to compete with Manchester United.
But the newspaper say Chelsea have made it clear they will not pay the £100m Dortmund are apparently looking for.
Blues boss Frank Lampard is known to be an admirer of Sancho and is keen to boost his attacking options when the transfer window reopens.
Sancho, widely tipped to return to England, was a Chelsea fan as a boy and reports previously suggested a move to the Bridge was likely.
However, United are now being touted as the strong favourites to sign him.
And an interesting story in the South China Morning Post quoted an unnamed agent as saying that he believes Sancho will not be joining Chelsea.
The agent is said to have been involved in major deals – and says he has previously dealt with Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp.
The agent said: “I’ve read the Chelsea speculation and I’m convinced that it’s the agents ramping up the talk to try and create an auction situation which would suit them and Dortmund.
“Chelsea will lose Pedro and Willian for nothing when the season ends. Roman Abramovich is more about patching the squad up now than breaking transfer records.
“They let Morata go and brought Tammy Abraham back on loan. They took Higuain on loan. They’re not going crazy any more.
“Liverpool are not in the market for £100 million players and they don’t need him.
“I’ve dealt with Klopp – they’d rather pay half that amount for a player a step or two behind Sancho who they think they can improve.”