Chelsea are reportedly eyeing a summer move for Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro but are set to face competition from Porto, Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus.
According to Spanish outlet OK Diario (via the Daily Star's Alex Wood), the Brazilian is expected to leave the Bernabeu this summer—as he has played very little under manager Zinedine Zidane—and Porto are prepared to pay £16 million for him, which may give them the edge over Chelsea.
Since Frenchman Zidane took over from Rafael Benitez in early January, Casemiro has made just two starts for Los Blancos, per WhoScored.com.
He has the quality to be a regular first-team player at a number of other top sides and could be the answer to Chelsea's midfield problems.
The Blues have improved significantly of late under interim boss Guus Hiddink, and Bleacher Report's Sam Tighe believes they will be playing in Europe next season:
But they still need added strength in the middle of the park, as Nemanja Matic has been very disappointing this term.
Casemiro, 24, is a combative defensive midfielder who could bring some solidity back to the Chelsea midfield while also taking the burden off Matic.
Per OK Diario's report, though, the fact that he was on loan to Porto last season means they are front-runners to sign Casemiro, and Chelsea may have to shell out big money if they want to snap him up.
The Blues could also reportedly move for PSG's Edinson Cavani in the summer, as Antonio Conte is widely expected to take over at Chelsea and is eager to add greater strength to the forward line, per the Evening Standard's Simon Johnson.
The report said that the current Italy boss also has his sights set on Inter Milan's Mauro Icardi as Diego Costa, Loic Remy and Radamel Falcao could all potentially leave Stamford Bridge this summer.
Cavani has long been rumoured to be unsettled at PSG, and it was recently reported that he had been offered to both Chelsea and Manchester City for £30 million, per the Sun's Mike McGrath.
That is quite a significant sum for a 29-year-old, but he is a consistent goalscorer and has netted 12 times in 25 Ligue 1 appearances this season, per WhoScored.
The Uruguayan would be an adequate replacement for Costa should he return to Atletico Madrid, but another top-quality addition would also be necessary to avoid an overreliance on one striker.
|Giacomo Bonaventura: 2015-16 Serie A Stats|
|Appearances (as a sub)||25(1)|
|Shots per game||3.3|
|Pass success percentage||82.3|
Elsewhere, Chelsea have reportedly joined Liverpool and Manchester City in the race to sign AC Milan attacker Giacomo Bonaventura, per Italian website Calciomercato.com.
The Serie A giants are reportedly asking for £14 million for the 26-year-old, per James Walters in the Daily Star.