EXCLUSIVE: Chelsea target Sporting CP midfielder Manuel Ugarte

Jacque Talbot
Jacque Talbot
  • Updated: 3 May 2023 14:37 BST
  • 3 min read
Manuel Ugarte. Sporting CP, Chelsea. 2022/23
© ProShots

Chelsea’s recruitment admire Manuel Ugarte but the process of finding their new manager is holding up any substantial move, FootballTranfers can reveal.

The Blues are keen on the Sporting CP midfielder but their pursuit of Mauricio Pochettino is holding things up.

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The club already have a huge score of players among their ranks, some of which will need to be sold, and they are reluctant to pursue major signings until a long-term coach is signed and sealed, we are told.

READ MORE: What is Frank Lampard’s record at Chelsea?

Ugarte is of interest to Liverpool as well, as FootballTransfers reported earlier this week, with sources in Portugal saying that the club have been in talks with the Uruguayan for ‘two weeks’.

But we have been informed by sources near Liverpool that though Ugarte is really liked, he is not a priority for the Merseyside club at the moment and that there are other players further up than the 22-year-old.

Sticking point for Liverpool

It is likely why the club have been haggling over his release clause of €60million. The Reds are looking at the No.8 and No.10 positions with more urgency, whileFootballTransfers understands, as revealed in January, that Nice midfielder Khephren Thuram is on Jurgen Klopp’s list of options.

FootballTransfers were first to reveal Liverpool admire Thuram
© ProShots - FootballTransfers were first to reveal Liverpool admire Thuram

L’Equipe have reported that Thuram is liked by Liverpool and is available for €60m. It’s our understanding that the fee could be a lot less - somewhere like €45m - but a lot will depend on the amount of interest there is in the midfielder from other clubs.

We are told that Thuram is almost certain to leave this summer window, but that a move for centre-back Jean-Clair Todibo, who has also been linked, is far more unlikely. The defender has had a slump in form recently and there are concerns that he is not quite ready for the switch this year at least.

Mason Mount and Alexis Mac Allister are considered as being among the main targets for Liverpool, as has been reported elsewhere.

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