Report: Chelsea monitoring 23-year-old star that has been likened to Luis Figo

Chelsea are keeping a close eye on the situation between Ousmane Dembele and Barcelona regarding the renewal of his contract.

Sport reported that the 23-year-old wanted to extend his stay at the Camp Nou but would have to wait until the club’s presidential elections had been finalised before putting pen to paper.

Dembele’s current deal ends next summer and he wants to see an improved offer if he is to confirm his services to the Spanish giants.

Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images

Chelsea are apparently up against Manchester United and Juventus in the potential race for the fine Frenchman.

If the player and Barcelona do not reach an agreement then there is an obligation to listen to bids for the young forward.

Dembele has started to show some of the form that made Barca splurge £135.5m (BBC Sport) to buy him from Borussia Dortmund.

He has scored six goals and assisted three more in 21 appearances this season despite his side’s general struggles under new manager Ronald Koeman.

Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

His stock has continued to rise since he was named Ligue 1 Young Player of the Year whilst at Rennes in 2016.

Luis Figo added to his value when he told Marca: “If you have to ask me for a player that reminds me of the way I played, I’ll say that I really like (Ousmane) Dembele. He’s had bad luck with injuries, but he has enormous potential.”

Thomas Tuchel may be highly interested in this development because of his prior relationship with Dembele.

The pair worked together at Dortmund and according to Le Parisien, Tuchel tried to persuade Dembele to join him at Paris St Germain.

Photo by Boris Streubel/Bongarts/Getty Images

Chelsea have a long list of transfer targets that mainly extend to the Bundesliga. Erling Haaland, Dayot Upamencano and David Alaba have all been mentioned as options.

Tuchel’s knowledge of the German division may be a major pull if they do move for any of the aforementioned names, a trait that would extend to Dembele as well.

The Chelsea Chronicle View

I’m really not sure how many expensive gems Chelsea can fit in their crown. Dembele is a talent, yes, but the Blues have plenty in the attacking department already.

So unless they’re willing to offload some of their own assets, I’d suggest staying clear of this one.  

Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.