Strakosha opens up about potential Chelsea move

Former Lazio goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha is honoured to be linked with a move to Chelsea and says that joining a Premier League club would be a dream come true.

The Albania international will leave the Biancocelesti as his contract expires on June 30 and he has decided against extending it.

“I need to empty my head and prepare my body for a new league, which will be different from Italy,” he told Fabrizio Romano.

“I’ll always be grateful, Lazio, I have good memories. They made me who I am today. I started playing with the Primavera, we won titles and they made my dream come true, playing with the first team, winning titles and playing in the Champions League and Europa League.”

The 27-year-old collected 208 appearances with the Biancocelesti and won four trophies during his stay at the club: two Coppa Italia and two Italian Supercups.

“I loved those moments, I will always say thank you to the club, the fans and all the teammates I had,” he added.

“It was a hard decision for me to leave, it was like a home to me. I spent the most important years of my life there. I am happy and ready for the new chapter.”

He has spent all his professional career at the Stadio Olimpico except for 2015-16, when he played on loan at Salernitana.

Strakosha has now set his sights on a transfer to England, where Chelsea are said to be interested in securing his services.

“It’s an honour to be linked to a club like Chelsea. All the clubs in the Premier League are a dream, to me, it’s the best league in the world, so it’s an honour for me,” the goalkeeper admitted.

“I am really happy, I started from the bottom like many kids, so to be linked with them it’s a big honour and pleasure for my family and me. What I’ve done since I was young is paying off now.”

Chelsea will try to sign the 27-year-old if they sell Kepa during the summer transfer window. Maurizio Sarri initially wanted to reunite with his former goalkeeper at Chelsea, but his salary is too high for Lazio, so they are now in talks with Atalanta-owned Marco Carnesecchi who spent the last season on loan at Cremonese.