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Chelsea ‘identify Brighton’s Adam Webster as Wesley Fofana alternative’

Chelsea ‘identify Brighton’s Adam Webster as Wesley Fofana alternative’

Chelsea have reportedly identified Brighton & Hove Albion centre-back Adam Webster as a potential alternative to Leicester City‘s Wesley Fofana.

The Blues are looking to recruit a new central defender before the transfer window shuts on September 1, with Fofana believed to be their primary target.

Chelsea are allegedly contemplating whether to make a world-record bid of over £80m for the 21-year-old, who has told Leicester that he wants to move to Stamford Bridge.

Fofana was left out of the Foxes squad for last weekend’s 2-1 home defeat in the Premier League against Southampton, with Brendan Rodgers citing that the defender was ‘not in the right frame of mind to play’.

Rodgers insists that Fofana – along with Leicester’s other key players including Youri Tielemans and James Maddison – is not for sale and that the offers received for some of their players have fallen well below the club’s valuation.

Leicester City's Wesley Fofana pictured on July 23, 2022© Reuters

Chelsea are understood to have drawn up a list of alternatives should they fail in their pursuit of Fofana, with Manchester United‘s Harry Maguire believed to be on their radar.

According to the Daily Mail, Brighton centre-back Webster is another name who the Blues are closely monitoring and they will consider making an enquiry for the defender in the final 10 days of the window.

A report back in January claimed that Chelsea identified the 27-year-old as a potential target ahead of the 2022-23 campaign, and they still hold their interest in the Englishman.

Webster has become an influential player under Brighton head coach Graham Potter since arriving at the club from Bristol City for around £20m in the summer of 2019.

The 6ft 3in centre-back has made a total of 91 appearances for the Seagulls across all competitions, scoring seven goals including a header against Chelsea in a 1-1 draw at the Amex Stadium last season.

Brighton & Hove Albion's Adam Webster pictured on February 12, 2022© Reuters

Webster has since made a strong start to the new campaign with Brighton, who have kept two clean sheets and accumulated seven points from their opening three Premier League fixtures.

The former Portsmouth youngster still has four years remaining on his contract at Brighton, who are under no pressure to sell the centre-back.

Chelsea have already raided Brighton for left-back Marc Cucurella this summer, with the 24-year-old moving to West London in a deal which could rise to a figure in excess of £60m.

As well as Webster, the Seagulls are hoping to keep hold of midfielder Moises Caicedo and attacker Leandro Trossard, who have recently attracted interest from Man United and Everton respectively.

Meanwhile, Chelsea are reportedly in advanced talks with Barcelona over a permanent deal for former Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

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