Players who have played for Chelsea and Juventus amid De Ligt links

Players who have played for Chelsea and Juventus amid Matthijs de Ligt links

Chelsea are interested in signing Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt, according to Sky Italy.

The 22-year-old Netherlands centre-back has a £103m release clause in his Juventus contract, which is due to expire in 2024.

Due to De Ligt’s importance to the Old Lady, the Turin giants will only reportedly entertain offers near the £100m mark, which would make the former Ajax star the world’s most expensive defender, eclipsing the £80m Manchester United paid to sign Harry Maguire from Leicester City.

However, Chelsea are reportedly willing to offload Timo Werner as part of the deal to sign Juventus’ number four.

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According to Sky Italy, the Blues may offer the German forward Werner plus £38million in a player-plus-cash deal to try and land De Ligt.

Thomas Tuchel is seeking defensive reinforcements this summer, following the departures of Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen who have both left west London with their contracts expiring at the end of this month.

The Bianconeri saw off competition from the likes of Manchester United and Paris Saint Germain to sign De Ligt from Ajax in a deal worth £67.5m in July 2019, making him the most expensive defender in Serie A history.

De Ligt – Ajax’s youngster-ever captain, has played 117 times for Juve and has won the Scudetto, Italian Cup and Italian Super Cup during his time in Turin, but he’s yet to get past the Champions League last-16 since joining the Italian giants.

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The 37-time Netherlands international won the Eredivisie and reached the Champions League semi-finals under the tutelage of Erik ten Hag, and he’d be a quality addition for Tuchel’s Blues.

But with legendary Italian Giorgio Chiellini bringing an end to his 18-year stay at Juventus this summer, and his long-term defensive partner Leonardo Bonucci in the latter stages of his career, Juve will not want to lose De Ligt.

However, if Todd Boehly’s Blues can put together a package that Juventus believe is too good to refuse there is a possibility that De Ligt could make the big-money move to west London this summer.

With that in mind, the Chelsea Chronicle takes a look back at the players who have played for Chelsea and Juventus.

Players who have played for Chelsea and Juventus

Alvaro Morata

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After struggling to establish himself as a starter in a star-studded Real Madrid side whose forward line consisted of Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo, Morata moved to Turin in 2014.

He spent two seasons with Juve, winning back-to-back Serie A titles as well as reaching a Champions League final, for which he scored the equaliser against Barcelona, before Los Blancos re-signed the Spanish striker.

But after just one season back in the Spanish capital, Chelsea paid the Santiago Bernabeu side £60m to bring Morata to Stamford Bridge.

Like many big-name strikers before and after him, Morata struggled to live up to the hype with the Blues and he returned to Spain on loan with Atletico Madrid, in a deal which was later made permanent.

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The 29-year-old has spent the last two seasons on loan at Juve, but he looks set to return to the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium for pre-season.

Morata finished his Chelsea career with 24 goals from 72 appearances.

Nicolas Anelka

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Le Sulk didn’t stick around anywhere for long, but it’s testament to the Blues that Anelka’s longest stint at a club came via Stamford Bridge where he spent four years following his arrival from Bolton in January 2008.

During his time with Chelsea, Anelka won the Premier League, FA Cup and was the 2008-09 Premier League Golden Boot winner after scoring 19 times.

After scoring 59 goals from 184 games for Chelsea, the former France international was lured to the Chinese Super League.

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But the striker only spent a year with Shanghai Shenhua before moving to Juventus on a short-term deal.

Anelka only made three appearances for the Old Lady before moving back to the Premier League with West Brom and then finishing his career in India with Mumbai City.

Gianluca Vialli

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Following his big-money transfer from Sampdoria to Juventus, Vialli spent four seasons in Turin before making the move to the Premier League with Chelsea.

Across his three years with Chelsea, the Italian striker helped the Blues win the League Cup, FA Cup, UEFA Super Cup and the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup, scoring 40 goals from 83 games.

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Vialli, who is currently working as a team coordinator for the Italian national side, managed Chelsea for 132 matches from February 1998 to September 2000.

Tiago Mendes

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A Jose Mourinho signing from Benfica in the summer of 2004, the Portuguese midfielder only spent one season at Stamford Bridge, where he got his hands on the Premier League trophy before moving to Ligue 1 side Lyon.

Tiago made 52 appearances for the Blues, scoring four goals, one of which was a screamer at Old Trafford.

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After two years with Lyon, Tiago made the move to Juventus where he would stay for two-and-a-half years before making the move to Atletico Madrid where he made over 200 appearances for Diego Simeone.

Adrian Mutu

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Following his arrival from Parma, the Romanian would spend just over a year at Stamford Bridge before the club cut ties with Mutu following his doping ban.

From 38 games he scored 10 goals and would sign for Livorno in January 2005 before signing for Juve just a matter of days later without even making his debut for his former club.

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Mutu spent 18 months at Juventus before signing for Fiorentina where he spent five years. The 43-year-old, who also received another doping ban in April 2010, is currently the manager of Romanian side FC Rapid.

Gonzalo Higuain

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The former Real Madrid man produced the best season of his career under the stewardship of Maurizio Sarri at Napoli for the 2015-16 campaign.

The Argentine striker scored 36 Serie A goals and led Sarri’s side to a second-placed finish, but Juventus then signed him for £75.3m weeks later.

Higuain spent two seasons as Juve’s main man but was shipped out on loan to AC Milan following the arrival of former Real Madrid teammate Cristiano Ronaldo.

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After an underwhelming spell with the Rossoneri, Higuain was reunited with Sarri at Chelsea after joining the Blues in January 2019, on a loan deal until the end of the season.

Higuain scored five goals from 18 games and after returning to Juventus last season he moved to David Beckham’s Inter Miami, who are managed by Phil Neville, in September 2020.

Juan Cuadrado

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Chelsea splashed the cash to sign the versatile Colombian international from Fiorentina in February 2015 and Cuadrado spent two-and-a-half years at Stamford Bridge before returning to Serie A with Juventus.

After two seasons on loan at the Allianz Stadium, Cuadrado made the permanent move to Turin in 2017.

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He made just 15 appearances for the Blues, but the 111-cap Colombian has won 11 trophies with Juve, including five Serie A titles.

Pierluigi Casiraghi

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The Italian striker signed for Juventus from Monza in 1989 and spent four years in Turin before spending a season on loan at Lazio, which was later made a permanent switch.

After four seasons at the Stadio Olympico, the 44-time Italian international made the move to Chelsea where he made 15 appearances and scored once.

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His time at Stamford Bridge was cut short by a cruciate knee ligament injury which resulted in him retiring.

Casiraghi, who has pursued a career in coaching, has been the manager of the Italian Under -21 side, as well as the senior Azzurri team, but his most recent position was in April 2017 where he was the assistant manager at Birmingham City.

Didier Deschamps

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After winning the Champions League with Marseille, the World Cup and European Championship winner replicated his success with Juventus where he would go onto win eight trophies.

Following a five-year stay at the Stadio delle Alpi, Deschamps spent a year in England with Chelsea before seeing out his playing career in Spain with Valencia.

The defensive midfielder made 46 appearances for the Blues and played a key part in helping the side win the 2000 FA Cup.

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The Frenchman, who has previously managed Monaco, Juventus and Marseille, has had great success managing Les Bleus and has won the World Cup and Nations League.

Tom is a lifelong Manchester United supporter who was spoilt with success growing up thanks to Sir Alex Ferguson. An NCTJ-accredited sports journalist with over five years experience in the industry, and now a football writer for GRV Media who specialises in covering the Red Devils. He has no doubt Erik ten Hag is the man to bring the glory days back to Old Trafford!