Chelsea set to announce first signing under Enzo Maresca. Newcastle won’t like this

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Chelsea are making a significant move to hijack Newcastle’s near-complete deal for Fulham defender Tosin Adarabioyo.

Newcastle had reportedly secured a verbal agreement with Adarabioyo, whose contract with Fulham is set to expire at the end of June, making him a free agent.

Despite this, Chelsea only recently entered the fray, and have held talks with Adarabioyo’s representatives and are preparing their own competitive contract offer​.

Adarabioyo, who has been a key player for Fulham, is seen as a valuable addition to Chelsea’s defence, especially with the impending departure of Thiago Silva and potential sale of Trevoh Chalobah.

Chelsea’s ability to offer European football next season, a higher wage structure, and a significant platform for international recognition could be decisive factors in convincing Adarabioyo to choose Stamford Bridge over St. James’ Park​.

Newcastle, under Eddie Howe, have been keen to bolster their defensive options, especially after an injury-ridden season that exposed their lack of depth at the back. They see Adarabioyo as an ideal solution to strengthen their squad for the upcoming season. However, Chelsea’s last-minute intervention has put Newcastle’s plans in jeopardy, leading to frustration within the Magpies’ camp​.

A new centre-back signing is one of the key positions Enzo Maresca has planned to strengthen.

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano said of the deal: “Chelsea are closing in on deal to sign Tosin Adarabioyo, negotiations at final stages.

“Newcastle have been working on the Tosin deal for weeks but Chelsea are now clear favourites, cautious until it’s sealed.

“Tosin to be first signing for Enzo Maresca, if all goes to plans.”