Chelsea hurdle could block Bradley Barcola swap deal as Blues eye PSG hijack

Mauricio Pochettino on Moises Caicedo's debut after Chelsea's 3-1 loss to West Ham

Chelsea have reportedly been told by Lyon to include players in any approach for Bradley Barcola. The French outfit are keen to secure at least one new star, plus a healthy fee for letting go of the 20-year-old, with Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona also in the hunt.

Barcola bagged seven goals in all competitions last term, excelling in what turned out to be a breakthrough season. Lyon’s chances of keeping hold of him were dealt a blow by finishing seventh and missing out on all forms of European football.

PSG are said to be leading the race for the £43million-rated youngster. But while an agreement is already in place on personal terms, with the Parc des Princes reportedly Barcola’s preferred destination, there is still no consensus over a fee.

The Parisians have already seen a £26m bid rejected by Lyon, who according to transfer expert Fabrizio Romano, would prefer to negotiate a player-plus-cash deal.

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That may prove tricky for all of Chelsea, Barca and PSG. While Blues boss Mauricio Pochettino would naturally be keen to get his hands on Barcola, convincing one of his players to ditch Stamford Bridge and head to France could be a tough sell.

Not least because the wages on offer would likely be significantly smaller at Lyon, who face a battle to work their way back into the European spots this term.

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Marc Cucurella, Trevoh Chalobah, Malang Sarr, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Romelu Lukaku have all been strongly linked with exits over the course of the summer. It is currently unclear exactly which stars Lyon have their eye on.

In the race for Barcola, Chelsea have the benefit of recent negotiations with Les Gones. The Blues thrashed out a complicated £26m switch for Malo Gusto back in January, which saw the youngster head back to the club on loan before arriving at Stamford Bridge this summer.

It remains to be seen exactly where Barcola would fit into Pochettino’s first-team plans. Noni Madueke, Mykhaylo Mudryk and Raheem Sterling are battling it out for minutes out wide, while Ben Chilwell is also being considered in a more advanced role so far this term.

Barcola has spent his whole career on Lyon’s books, becoming part of their academy set-up at the age of 8. His exploits in senior football last campaign saw him called up to the France U21 squad, for whom he has made a handful of appearances this year.

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