Jules Kounde has emerged as Chelsea’s top target once again after his transfer to Stamford Bridge fell through 12 months ago, with Thomas Tuchel hoping lightning won’t strike twice
Chelsea have turned to a familiar face in Jules Kounde following Antonio Rudiger’s exit to Real Madrid.
Thomas Tuchel will have a new-look defence next season following the German’s departure, with Andreas Christensen set to follow suit with a proposed move to Barcelona. Kounde has emerged as the Blues’ top target once again after his transfer to Stamford Bridge fell through 12 months ago.
Chelsea were in talks with Sevilla for the duration of the summer window and the defender looked on the verge of joining until the deal collapsed at the final hurdle, much to to the West Londoners’ dismay.
Tuchel’s side are making a second attempt to sign the Frenchman, however, and it is ‘only a matter of time’ before a deal is completed, worth around £51.5million, according to Diario AS. Chelsea have been given the green light to make signings after Todd Bohely’s takeover was completed last week.
Kounde would have been equally gutted last year with the player on the verge of a life-altering move, but he didn’t let that feeling of disappointment linger too long as he turned his attention to the season ahead with Sevilla.
The 23-year-old showed a level of maturity to put it to the back of his mind, remaining professional throughout the campaign as he impressed for the Spanish side knowing that if he focused matters on the pitch, his future would sort itself out.
Speaking about his failed move to Chelsea, Kounde said in September: “As always, we all know it was a lively summer. Now it is over. I am concentrating on the team, on what I have to do.
“The team needs me and I need the team to perform at our best. At the moment, I am happy with the results, with how I am playing, though I have a lot of room to improve and to have a more complete season than last season.”
Kounde’s level-headed reaction to the deal collapsing would have likely vindicated Chelsea’s interest in the centre-half and, if anything, would have encouraged them to go back in for the defender.
And things have started to fall into place for Chelsea this time around. Sevilla are said to be in financial trouble, having already sold Diego Carlos to Aston Villa, meaning they won’t stand in the way of Kounde’s departure at the second time of asking, as the team may need him to join Chelsea to allay their cash fears.
Kounde has reaped the rewards for his patience, too. As Rudiger and Christensen seek pastures new, he will have a clear run at the starting XI, something that wasn’t guaranteed 12 months ago. They say good things come to those who wait – and that appears to be the case for Chelsea and Kounde.