Who is Cesare Casadei? The ‘Italian Frank Lampard’ set to join Chelsea
Chelsea’s summer of spending shows no signs of slowing down as after splashing the cash on Raheem Sterling, Kalidou Koulibaly, Marc Cucurella, Gabriel Slonina and Carney Chukwuemeka, the Blues are back in the market for another huge talent.
Thomas Tuchel’s side are closing in on the signing of Inter Milan and Italy Under-19 wonderkid midfielder Cesare Casadei, a player compared in style to Chelsea legend Frank Lampard.
According to multiple sources, Casadei has agreed personal terms with Chelsea on a six-year deal, with the clubs now just finalising a transfer fee.
So what do we know about the 19-year-old?
What position does Cesare Casadei play in?
Casadei is a central midfielder.
How good is Cesare Casadei?
Casadei is the latest in a golden generation of central midfielders to come through the Italian system.
At Euro 2020 the brilliant trio of Marco Verratti, Jorginho and Nicolo Barella led Italy to glory and behind them is an abundance of incredibly talented and young centre midfielders such as Sandro Tonali, Manuel Locatelli and Davide Frattesi.
Among the group of teenage Italian midfielders who have been tipped for the top is Casadei, who has been making waves with Inter.
The Nerazzurri signed Casadei as a 15-year-old from Cesena and he soon emerged as one of their most exciting players of a generation.
The 19-year-old is a versatile central midfielder who is able to cover multiple roles in the centre of the park.
His favoured role is as a mezz’ala, which is the right or left of a three-man central midfield. But he can also play as a central midfielder in a two, as a trequartista (an attacking midfielder) or in a wide midfield role if required.
In the past two seasons he was a key player for Inter’s Primavera youth team. He has shown himself to be a dangerous goalscoring midfielder, as he found the net 17 times in the 2021-22 campaign.
This helped Inter’s Primavera side win the league title, and he also became renowned for some clutch goals – including one against Roma.
Casadei stands well over 6ft tall, is well-built for his age and is brilliant in the air. He has been described as a “heading machine” and has scored a host of goals from bullet headers in which he has leapt above his man to power the ball in.
Carboni ➡️ Casadei— Uncle $harma 🎙️ (@RSharmzz) May 31, 2022
This guy is a headers machine 🔥 pic.twitter.com/is2R2Pk67z
The youngster has also been likened to Chelsea legend Frank Lampard for his ability to score from midfield and make late runs into the box.
He is very highly-rated at Inter and was called up by coach Simone Inzaghi for the summer training camp.
He has also been a key figure in Italy’s youth teams and he was part of the Italy Under-19 side that reached the semi-finals of the European Championship in June, losing to eventual winners England 2-1 after taking an early lead.
Together with Fabio Miretti of Juventus, Casadei was considered the star of that Italy Under-19 side.
What clubs are interested in Cesare Casadei?
Casadei has been attracting attention from many of Europe’s big clubs for much of 2022 but Chelsea are set to win the race.
The Blues opened up negotiations to sign Casadei in August 2022. The Evening Standard’s Chelsea correspondent Nizaar Kinsella reported that a deal reaching around €24 million could be possible, the same price that was paid for Aston Villa’s young wonderkid Carney Chukwuemeka.
Chelsea want options for their midfield succession plan for N'Golo Kante and Jorginho.— Nizaar Kinsella (@NizaarKinsella) August 3, 2022
Several offers made to Inter wonderkid Cesare Casadei with more to come. Could similar to Carney Chukwuemeka near £20m. #CFC https://t.co/gQ2wspQoHC
Inter have been demanding €20m in total, according to the Italian media.
Chelsea were not the only club currently interested in Casadei. Arsenal have also been scouting him, while Sassuolo and Nice wanted to sign him this summer. Torino tried to include Casadei in negotiations for Bremer before Inter had their deal for the Brazilian hijacked last month by Juventus.
Chelsea are set to win the chase, though, also because Inter need to make money and Casadei will represent a big capital gain given he is a youth team product.
When does Cesare Casadei’s contract expire?
Casadei’s contract runs out on July 30, 2024.
How old is Casadei?
Casadei was born on 10 January, 2003. He is 19.
What is Casadei’s height?
Casadei is 186cm, or around 6ft 1in.