Chelsea have set their sights on a second winger from Spanish giants FC Barcelona, according to reports.
The Blues have been heavily linked with Ousmane Dembele over the last several months. Dembele is out of contract at the Camp Nou at the end of June, meaning he is able to leave the club on a free transfer.
And whilst signing Dembele for free could be a good move, there is some risk involved. The 25-year-old is clearly a talented player, as shown by his 13 assists in 21 La Liga appearances during 2021/22.
However, it is well documented that Dembele is one of the most injury-prone players around.
During his time at Barcelona, he has had 14 separate injury/illness issues, causing him to miss a staggering 102 games for La Blaugrana.
So, it is perhaps not too surprising to see Chelsea looking at other options. One of which appears to be Barcelona’s Alex Balde.
Balde is a product of Barcelona’s famed La Masia academy and as spent his entire career in Catalonia. He is a regular feature at under-21 level and has made seven senior appearances for La Blaugrana.
Balde is a left-winger by trade, but he can also be deployed at left-back, something Thomas Tuchel will likely find very useful in his wing-back system.
And according to Mundo Deportivo, Chelsea have asked Barcelona about Balde’s situation and have contacted his agent, Jorge Mendes, to show their interest in taking over his services.
No potential fee is mentioned in the report. Balde is under contract at the Camp Nou until 2024.