Chelsea are set to sign Moises Caicedo from Brighton after agreeing a British record deal worth £115m.
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Liverpool thought they were set to welcome Caicedo to Anfield after agreeing a stunning £111m deal for the midfielder.
Jurgen Klopp is a known admirer of the 21-year-old and is keen to bolster his options in midfield following the departures of Jordan Henderson and Fabinho.
But Caicedo’s preference was always Stamford Bridge and he effectively turned down a move to Liverpool to hold out for Chelsea.
Given Brighton accepted a £111m bid for Caicedo, it was then up to Chelsea to at least match that offer in order to bring the Ecuador international to west London.
But Chelsea have not just matched Liverpool’s offer but improved it, reaching an agreement with Brighton worth £115m, according to the Daily Telegraph.
The deal will make Caicedo the most expensive signing in Premier League history. Enzo Fernandez, who joined Chelsea for £105m in January, previously held the record.
As Caicedo agreed personal terms with Chelsea earlier in the summer, the Blues could unveil the midfielder as soon as Sunday, when they begin their 2023-24 Premier League campaign against Liverpool.
Caicedo has flourished since joining Brighton in 2021, helping the Seagulls qualify for Europe for the first time in the club’s history and reach the FA Cup semi-finals last season.
He will become Pochettino’s latest summer signing following the likes of Nicolas Jackson, Christopher Nkunku and Axel Disasi.
Chelsea only finished 12th in the Premier League last season but are expected to improve given their transfer activity and the arrival of former PSG and Tottenham boss Pochettino.
Reacting to Caicedo’s decision to snub Liverpool, ex-Anfield captain Jamie Redknapp said: ‘It’s been astonishing what has happened these past few days. I thought I’d seen it all with football transfers.
‘I’m obviously hugely biased on this one but this is astonishing for me. I didn’t think I’d see a situation like this.
‘Normally Liverpool would always win this one, they turned their attention from [Romeo] Lavia a couple of days ago, and now they’ve turned their attentions to Caicedo.
‘I woke up and I thought it was inevitable. I was very happy with that one, but to hear the news he’s turned Liverpool down. I’ll believe it when I see it and when I see him in a Chelsea shirt. I find it quite astonishing.
‘I get the attraction of Chelsea, I really do, but in terms of the history of the club, I’m amazed.
‘Especially when you’re turning down Jurgen Klopp who has been there for so long and could have joined [former Brighton team-mate] Alexis Mac Allister. I thought it would be a perfect move.’
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