Chelsea in four-team battle to sign ‘next Gerard Pique’ for £12m

Chelsea are reportedly in a four-team battle to sign Luka Vuskovic, who has been labelled as the ‘next Gerard Pique’. Chelsea’s mass overhaul under their new ownership is expected to continue this summer with the club building for the future as well as the present.

There’s already been an array of new arrivals at Stamford Bridge from record sums being spent on Wesley Fofana, Enzo Fernandez and Mykahylo Mudryk as stars to change the club immediately to signings more geared toward the future. Carney Chukwuemeka, Andrey Santos and David Datro Fofana are just a few of the players who Chelsea will hope can go on to have bright futures further down the line.

They’ve already begun their summer youth plans and are closing in on a deal for Benfica starlet Diego Moreira. But it’s Hajduk Split defender Vuskovic who is now seemingly the next future star on Chelsea’s wishlist.

According to the Daily Mail, Chelsea were one of four Premier League clubs to send scouts to watch the centre-back in action recently. The 16-year-old is also attracting interest from Manchester City, Liverpool and Newcastle.

The report claims that a bid of around £12million would be enough to secure his signature this summer. The 6ft 4ins defender has already been likened to Barcelona legend Pique, although there are some ‘reservations’ about his size limiting his mobility.

City may be Chelsea’s closest challengers in signing Vuskovic as they’re said to have ‘already made an enquiry’. He’s already broken into Split’s first team this year, making his debut for the side just a few days after his 16th birthday.

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But it’s at youth level where Vuskovic has really shone so far having helped Split reach the UEFA Youth League final against AZ Alkmaar. He scored the winner against Shakhtar Donetsk in the intermediate stage earlier this year, although a red card forced him to miss the following matches against Manchester City and Borussia Dortmund.

It was Split’s semi-final win over AC Milan though where the Premier League scouts were in attendance to watch Vuskovic in action and it’s unlikely to be the last time the young Croatian has people turning up to watch him. For Chelsea, it’s the latest sign that the club’s ownership could be continuing a similar trend from what Roman Abramovich adopted during his tenure.

The Russian oligarch signed dozens of youth talents during his time in charge at Chelsea, before loaning them out to feeder clubs. Chelsea were then able to sell those players on for much higher fees than they were originally bought for in a bid to raise funds for first-team signings.

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