Premier League holders Chelsea have acquired the services of midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko from AS Monaco after they parted with £40m fee. The Frenchman becomes the Blues’ second most expensive signing in history – only behind Fernando Torres, who arrived from Liverpool in 2011 for £50m.
Bakayoko had been linked with a switch to Stamford Bridge since the end of last season, but a deal only materialised over the past week after the Blues were left disappointed in the pursuit of Romelu Lukaku. The Belgian was underlined as the priority target for the west London club, but the striker opted to join rivals Manchester United, where he secured his reunion with manager Jose Mourinho.
Following his arrival, Bakayoko had some fond words to stay about the English champions, and he is looking forward to working alongside Antonio Conte, who guided the Blues to their fifth Premier League title last term.
He told the club’s official website: “I am very happy to be here and to join this great team. I have grown up watching Chelsea. Signing was the natural thing for me because it is a club I loved very much in my childhood. I am now looking forward to evolving under this fantastic coach [Antonio Conte] and alongside so many great team-mates.”
Bakayoko becomes the Blues’ third recruit of the summer transfer window after Willy Caballero arrived on a free transfer from Manchester City while Antonio Rudiger sealed his switch from AS Roma earlier in the month. Conte has managed to improve his squad in the defensive side of things, and he will now hope to step up his interest in the forward department with Diego Costa set to leave the club.
Both Costa and Nemanja Matic have been omitted out of the Blues’ pre-season tour of China, and this gives a huge hint that the pair could be packing their bags ahead of the 2017/18 campaign.