Chelsea are reportedly preparing to hijack any Arsenal transfer approach for Atalanta striker Rasmus Hojlund, as the starlet’s stock continues to rise. The Dane’s recent goalscoring exploits for his country have only seen interest grow in the 20-year-old, after scoring seven in 24 Serie A games this season.
Mikel Arteta’s outfit have been credited with an interest in Hojlund despite already having Gabriel Jesus, Eddie Nketiah and Folarin Balogun on their books. Calcio Mercato have previously claimed that Arsenal and Juventus are leading the race for the young striker, with the Gunners said to be in pole position as of last week.
However, Chelsea could be set to repeat their Mykhaylo Mudryk trick in order to leapfrog Arsenal once again for a transfer target. The Gunners appeared to be leading the race for the Ukrainian as his several social media hints that he preferred a move to the Emirates did not go unnoticed, but Arsenal were gazumped by Chelsea and were not prepared to match their £88.5million fee.
Atalanta have reportedly placed a £60m price tag on Hojlund’s head, but Chelsea may have already taken the first step in striking a deal with the Italian club. The Daily Mail have claimed that the Blues invited Atalanta chairman Antonio Percassi to their recent Champions League tie with Borussia Dortmund at Stamford Bridge, where they discussed Hojlund’s availability.
Manchester United are also said to be interested in Hojlund, as Erik ten Hag searches for a marquee striker this summer. The Red Devils have already prepared an £80m offer for England captain Harry Kane, while Victor Osimhen and Goncalo Ramos are also reportedly on United’s shortlist.
Osimhen’s stunning season with Napoli has ensured that Chelsea will compete with United for his signature this summer, though the Blues reportedly will need to sell several Players first to comply with Premier League financial regulations as the Nigerian is set to cost any potential buyer over £100m.
One of the critiques regarding Chelsea’s mass spending under Todd Boehly and co is that a recognised striker was not signed as many new faces turned up at Stamford Bridge. Kai Havertz largely led the line for Graham Potter before he was sacked on Sunday, but a new striker is expected to arrive in the summer.
Whether that forward is Osimhen or Hojlund may depend on the funds that Chelsea can raise through sales, as seven stars are expected to be on the chopping block to prevent penalties from the Premier League over the Blues’ spending.
Which head coach is appointed at Stamford Bridge will likely have a say over a potential Hojlund purchase too, as Julian Nagelsmann appears to be the favourite to replace Potter.