Cape Town - Chelsea midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko is reportedly close to sealing a return to Monaco ahead of the European transfer deadline.
The Premier League transfer window may have shut but they can still
sell players to European teams and Monaco have until September 2 to get a
deal done to bring the midfielder back to the Stade Louis II.
Monaco are in desperate need of reinforcements after a poor start to
the season as they have just one point from three games so far, and face
a tough trip to Strasbourg on Sunday.
The holding midfielder joined Chelsea in a £40 million switch from Monaco in 2017 after helping them claim the Ligue 1 title.
Bakayoko was a key member of that Monaco side, but while former
team-mates Kylian Mbappe, Bernardo Silva, Fabinho and Benjamin Mendy
have gone on to star for their new clubs, the 25-year-old has fallen
completely off the radar at Chelsea.
The one-cap France international has managed just 29 Premier League
appearances during his time with the Blues and spent last season on loan
at AC Milan.
The Rossoneri did have the option to land Bakayoko outright for €35 million
this summer but decided against pursuing a permanent transfer as the
midfield enforcer struggled for consistency last term.
Bakayoko hasn't made an appearance for Chelsea this season under
Frank Lampard and hasn't even been included on the bench in any of their
four games so far.
French publication RMC have now reported the midfielder has agreed
terms with Monaco and a transfer is expected to be concluded in the
coming days, although Chelsea are still weighing up the offer.
Monaco hope to take Bakayoko on loan with the option of a permanent
€35 million deal next summer and that could be the issue holding the deal back.
As Monaco would have an option, rather than an obligation, to buy the
player outright next summer Chelsea could be left in the same situation
at the end of the season - with Bakayoko back with the squad for
pre-season and again searching for a new home.
The former Rennes man is under contract with Chelsea until 2022 and
the Premier League club may want assurances that a permanent move to
Monaco will be completed next summer before they sanction a deal,
although with no further interest in Bakayoko and time running out, the
Stamford Bridge club may have to accept the current offer if he is to
depart this summer.
- TeamTalk Media