Chelsea were keen on signing Jules Kounde last summer, but a transfer never happened after Sevilla increased their asking price for the defender.
Chelsea also renewed their interest in the 23-year-old this summer.
Kounde seemed to be top of Chelsea’s priority list at the start of the transfer window, as the Blues seemed intent to sign him this summer.
However, reliable transfer expert Fabrizio Romano, has claimed that the centre-back is no longer a priority for Chelsea.
Marina Granovskaia was in negotiations with Sevilla over a move but since she left her position as the sporting director, there hasn’t been contact over his sale.
Romano claims that ‘Kounde is still an option’ but with Barcelona’s interest in him, it ‘complicates’ things for Chelsea.
Manchester City defender Nathan Ake and Juventus centre-back Matthijs de Ligt are now the Blues’ preferred centre-back targets.
Former Chelsea right-back Glen Johnson has however questioned the deal.
According to Johnson, Ake isn’t a suitable replacement for the departed Antonio Rudiger, and his signing isn’t the one that will excite the fans.
Speaking to GGRecon, Johnson was asked whether Chelsea fans would feel “underwhelmed” if Ake was the man to replace Rudiger. The former Blues right-back said: “Yes, definitely.
“No disrespect to Ake, but I think most people were surprised when he went to Manchester City, certainly for that amount of money [£40m]. Put it this way, he didn’t blow my mind when he was at Bournemouth. He’s just ‘OK’.
“Then we saw the amount of money for him to go to City, and it was like: ‘Jesus, where have they seen that?!’. I don’t think he’s a suitable replacement for Rudiger at all.”