Chelsea’s hopes of landing Ben Chilwell this summer have been boosted after Ajax confirmed Nicolas Tagliafico is free to leave the club this summer.
Tagliafico is Leicester’s top target to replace England international Chilwell, should he get his wish of moving to Stamford Bridge.
Brendan Rodgers is a big admirer of the Argentine left-back, 27, and he is ready to make a play for him in the summer transfer market as he grows increasingly resigned to losing Chilwell.
Chelsea had also been watching Tagliafico but have made Chilwell their top target, while Arsenal have also flashed admiring glances in his direction.
And the Gunners could rival Leicester for his signature after it was confirmed by Ajax boss Erik Ten Hag that he will be allowed to leave this summer.
He told Het Parool: ‘For [Andre] Onana and [Donny] Van de Beek, another year at Ajax could certainly be an option.
‘For Tagliafico – because os his age – something different.
‘In preparation I will try Lisandro Martinez in that position.’
After capturing Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner, Chilwell is now Frank Lampard’s top summer target.
Lampard does not consider current left-back options Marcos Alonso and Emerson Palmieri as up to scratch and they are hopeful of landing Chilwell.
Should Leicester refuse to sell, Tagliafico is viewed as Plan B and he would be significantly cheaper than the £85million wanted by Leicester for Chilwell.
However, it seems more likely Tagliafico, who is keen on a move to the Premier League, will join the Champions League-chasing Foxes as a replacement for Chilwell, unless Arsenal also decide to join the hunt for his signature.
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