Chelsea edging closer to sealing Aleksandr Golovin transfer

epa06855088 Aleksandr Golovin of Russia reacts during the FIFA World Cup 2018 round of 16 soccer match between Spain and Russia in Moscow, Russia, 01 July 2018. (RESTRICTIONS APPLY: Editorial Use Only, not used in association with any commercial entity - Images must not be used in any form of alert service or push service of any kind including via mobile alert services, downloads to mobile devices or MMS messaging - Images must appear as still images and must not emulate match action video footage - No alteration is made to, and no text or image is superimposed over, any published image which: (a) intentionally obscures or removes a sponsor identification image; or (b) adds or overlays the commercial identification of any third party which is not officially associated with the FIFA World Cup) EPA/MAHMOUD KHALED EDITORIAL USE ONLY EDITORIAL USE ONLY

Chelsea are reportedly closing in on the signing of World Cup star Aleksandr Golovin after Juventus pulled out of the race.

Golovin has been a stand-out figure in Russia’s superb World Cup campaign which saw the hosts knock out European giants Spain in the last-16. Russia dumped Spain out thanks to a disciplined defensive display and Golovin scored for his country in a tense penalty shoot-out after extra-time.

Golovin’s performances has attracted the attention of Manchester United, Arsenal and a host of other big clubs across Europe, but the 22-year-old is under contract at CSKA Moscow until 2021. Goal claim CSKA were in talks with Juventus, but could not agree a transfer fee and the Serie A side has now moved onto other targets.

Chelsea are now set to snap up Golovin after Blues owner and Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich assured CSKA his side could meet their asking price for the midfielder.

CSKA want around £27million and Abramovich has promised Chelsea will be able to meet or come close to that valuation. Juventus were surprised by Chelsea’s sudden interest in Golovin and are not keen to get in a bidding war with the Premier League side. Golovin would be Chelsea’s first summer signing and could mark a turning point for the London club.

Head coach Antonio Conte remains in charge at the club, but is expected to be axed and replaced by Maurizio Sarri. Chelsea want to appoint Sarri before the start of pre-season and are close to agreeing a compensation deal with his former employers, Napoli.

The transfer policy at Stamford Bridge often runs independent to the manager, but Sarri has been consulted on several deals and made a host of requests to his soon-to-be employers over new faces.

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