If Chelsea is going to secure winger Andre Schurrle from Bayer Leverkusen, it may be contingent upon forward Kevin De Bruyne going the other way. If that is the case, The Blues must do everything possible to convince De Bruyne that Bayer is a good fit for him.
According to Dominic Fifield of The Guardian, Chelsea has a £20 million deal in place with Schurrle. Leverkusen needs a replacement for him, however, and is interested in De Bruyne, who is Chelsea property. De Bruyne reportedly prefers to play for Borussia Dortmund, though, so Chelsea is suddenly in a difficult position.
It is also being reported by Fifield that Dortmund has possibly agreed to a five-year deal with De Bruyne despite the fact that it hasn't worked out a transfer fee with Chelsea. According to Pete O'Rourke of Sky Sports, however, Dortmund is not showing its hand and has not confirmed any such dealings.
Pete O'Rourke @SportsPeteO
Borussia Dortmund are staying coy on reports that the club are close to signing Chelsea's Kevin de Bruyne. #CFC #BVB http://t.co/OYgtAQYyat5/14/2013, 11:56:05 AM
Chelsea is suddenly in a very difficult position as it has an ideal swap in place, but De Bruyne is complicating things. It is unclear if missing out on De Bruyne would be a deal breaker for Bayer, but it is certainly possible that the German club could take Schurrle off the table if The Blues decide to sell De Bruyne to Dortmund instead.
Schurrle is a rising star as evidenced by his 11 goals in 32 league appearances for Leverkusen during the 2012-13 season. He would be a great fit with Chelsea and could potentially develop into a top player over the next couple years. De Bruyne played well on loan to Werder Bremen as well with eight goals in 32 matches, but Schurrle appears to be the more dynamic player.
The best thing that Chelsea can possibly do right now is convince De Bruyne that Bayer would be a good landing spot. It's possible that De Bruyne has already made up his mind, but he is young and impressionable at the age of 21, so perhaps The Blues can sway him. Also, it's possible that Leverkusen may be willing to offer more for his services than its German rivals.
Another thing that could be holding this entire situation up in addition to Dortmund's interest is Chelsea's managerial situation. With Rafael Benitez leaving the Europa League Champions, there is some degree of uncertainty surrounding The Blues at the moment.
Jose Mourinho has agreed to become Chelsea's new manager, according to Simon Cass of The Daily Mail, but Chelsea can't do much until the transition of power becomes official. The Blues need to make a definitive decision when it comes to De Bruyne, and that simply cannot happen quite yet. That is partly why this situation has been drawn out for so long.
Chelsea will have a strong club next season regardless of whether or not it makes any big moves this offseason, but it would be a shame if The Blues missed out on Schurrle because of De Bruyne's Dortmund preference. Even if Schurrle isn't an immediate impact player for Chelsea next season, he has room to grow and can be a fan favorite in short order.
It's possible that Chelsea's only shot at Schurrle now lies with De Bruyne. The Belgian star may have no interest in changing his mind, but it would behoove Chelsea to try. The time for celebrating its title is nearly over already for Chelsea as big issues are at hand. De Bruyne's choice promises to be the biggest of them all.
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