Liverpool were reportedly interested in signing Carney Chukwuemeka this summer, however, a new update has emerged that has confirmed the Reds will miss their chance.
What’s the latest?
According to Italian journalist and transfer insider Fabrizio Romano, Chelsea have reached an agreement with Aston Villa to sign Chukwuemeka this summer.
Romano tweeted: “More on Carney Chukwuemeka deal. Been told player will travel to London tonight, fee around £15m plus add ons. Chelsea will seal six year deal, valid until 2028.
“Medical scheduled on Wednesday for Carney who’ll be unveiled as new signing later this week.”
Chelsea have also released a statement saying they have an agreement in place to seal his signature, with other reports suggesting the add-ons take a deal to £20m.
Could’ve been Liverpool’s Bellingham
It is reported that Jude Bellingham is a top priority transfer for Liverpool next summer with the transfer fee potentially adding up to around £103m, but what if they could have signed a rising star that cost a fraction of the price?
Jurgen Klopp is renowned for acquiring players and turning them into superstars, so the signing of Chukwuemeka may well have been the perfect opportunity to develop his very own Bellingham at Anfield, instead of waiting with hope to sign the Borussia Dortmund star.
The move to Chelsea comes as the young midfielder was adamant about not signing a new contract with Aston Villa which saw Steven Gerrard leave Chukwuemeka out of his pre-season squad that travelled to Australia this summer, further fuelling speculation around a move for the player as he entered the last 12 months of his contract.
The talented teenager has been drawing attention to himself for his performances in the Premier League 2 and continued to do so this summer in the England U19s team at the European U19 Championship, where he scored in the final against Israel to secure international victory for the side.
Over the competition, Chukwuemeka scored three goals and delivered two assists from his central midfield role, proving that much like Bellingham, he can make an impact in the final third.
The England international burst onto the scene at a similar age to Chelsea’s prospective new signing and has become one of the most exciting young players on the planet, bagging six goals and supplying 14 assists.
Sky Sports reporter Melissa Reddy, meanwhile, claims that the wonderkid is a “phenomenal talent” following the Premier League giants’ £20m move for the player:
“While he is a phenomenal talent at 18, it’s still a bit much to pay when there is no guarantees over how he will continue to develop.
“Chelsea have got themselves a kid who has extraordinary vision, so composed in possession, dribbling awareness and has real surety in himself. I’m excited to see how he develops if he gets the opportunity to advance as he has done at Villa.”
It almost sounds as if Reddy is describing Bellingham, with the Dortmund star very much cut from a similar cloth when it comes to technical ability and potential.
With that being said, the Liverpool manager will be hoping there are no hiccups when it comes to signing Bellingham next summer, otherwise, the club could very much rue their decision not to follow up on their interest in Chukwuemeka.