Report: Chelsea's transfer pursuit of defender is not Thomas Tuchel's idea
Chelsea have been scouting Sevilla defender Jules Kounde for a long time and Thomas Tuchel is not exactly the instigator of the club’s pursuit of the defender, according to The Telegraph’s Matt Law.
The 22-year-old’s transfer sage seems to have been pretty much set aside for a while amid the reported negotiation between Chelsea and Inter Milan for Romelu Lukaku.
While reports suggest that Tuchel is a big fan of Lukaku and now playing a big role in convincing the striker to join Chelsea, it does not seem to be the case with Kounde.
Obviously, Tuchel likely still had a say in the decision, but according to Law, the scouting department played a bigger role in this particular transfer saga.
“Kounde’s been on the radar for a while, actually. The scouts put him forward even last summer,” Law told the London is Blue podcast.
“They’ve been watching him for a long time, considering a move for quite some time. So it’s not one that’s come from nowhere.
“It’s one that the club [Chelsea] seem to be aware of, irrespective of Thomas Tuchel’s plans as well.”
Kounde could solve Chelsea’s right-back problems
Law suggested that Kounde’s pursuit is the club’s attempt to answer Tuchel’s demand of a new right-back.
Having failed to secure Achraf Hakimi’s signing, Chelsea are now reportedly trying to bring in Kounde rather than an alternative wing-back target.
This makes sense since Kounde’s arrival would allow Reece James to solely focus on playing as a right wing-back.
The main reason Tuchel played James on the right side of the back three towards the end of the season was to compensate for Cesar Azpilicueta’s lack of pace, particularly against quick forwards such as Jamie Vardy and Raheem Sterling.
Unlike Azpilicueta, whose age is catching up to him, Kounde is still young and relatively quick.
“So it [Kounde’s potential arrival] feels like a solution to a few problems,” Law added.
“But the interesting thing is that I’ve been told that they [Chelsea] only really want to [continue their pursuit of] Kounde if they’re sure that they’re going to sell one [defender].
“And at the moment that one seems most likely to be Kurt Zouma.”