Report: Chelsea will try again to sign 22-year-old star who Virgil van Dijk says is 'excellent'

Chelsea will reportedly make another move for Matthijs De Ligt following a failed first attempt earlier in the year.

This is according to Calciomercato, who claim the Blues are readying a ‘new assault’ for the defender’s signature.

Fellow Italian news outlet Tuttosport suggested in May that Juve had already rejected an offer for De Ligt’s services from the Stamford Bridge hierarchy.

Photo by Sportinfoto/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

It seems Chelsea have not been put off by the refusal and have instead rolled up their sleeves to try to break down the Serie A side’s barriers.

De Ligt on the lips

Their apparent desire to land the Dutch international is due to their own potential outgoings in the upcoming transfer window.

All four of Antonio Rudiger, Andreas Christensen, Cesar Azpilicueta and Thiago Silva are out of contract next summer.

Although Azpilicueta and Silva look set to sign a new deal, there is still plenty of uncertainty surrounding Rudiger and Christensen’s situations.

Losing any one of the defensive quartet would be a massive loss, hence the need to sign reinforcements.

Jules Kounde remains a standout option, following the back-and-forth with Sevilla ahead of the new season.

Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

As does De Ligt, a player still trying to rediscover his identity in a Juve jersey.

Dutch delight

The 22-year-old signed for the Italians in 2019 for a mammoth £67.8m (Sky Sports).

Avid watchers of the Old Lady would say he has yet to repay the expensive sum.

There is undoubtedly a bucket load of talent inside the centre-half just waiting to be washed over a team.

Just ask Virgil van Dijk, an international colleague of De Ligt.

Photo by Pieter van der Woude/BSR Agency/Getty Images

“What can De Ligt improve? In everything,” admitted the Liverpool man.

“He is an excellent defender, but he also knows he can improve.

“If you play like that at that age that’s fantastic. I am very happy that he is standing next to me.”

Who knows, perhaps the compatriots could become arch enemies if Chelsea do act upon their reported interest.

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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.