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Chelsea agree deal for Duran, Villa enquire about Maatsen

Chelsea have been granted permission to negotiate personal terms with Aston Villa striker Jhon Duran, while the Villains have also enquired about left-back Ian Maatsen, according to The Telegraph.

Chelsea are in discussions with Villa regarding the Colombian striker as they seek to bolster their forward line ahead of next season.

Reports suggest a deal worth up to £40 million is on the table for Duran, but a few hurdles remain. Chelsea are keen on a long-term contract with performance-based incentives rather than a high upfront salary.

Interestingly, the report claims Chelsea are conducting a thorough character assessment of the Colombian international. The former Chicago Fire centre-forward has quite the personality.

Even Villa sources acknowledge Duran’s eccentricity, but they noted that he is dedicated and has a perfect attendance record in training.

Villa manager Unai Emery is reportedly reluctant to let Duran go, but the Villains must sell due to financial regulations.

They need to sell some players to generate revenue to reinvest in the squad for their upcoming Champions League campaign.

Maatsen impressed on loan at Borussia Dortmund last season, reaching the Champions League final.

But his hefty £35 million release clause has deterred Dortmund from a permanent move, opening the door for Villa and other interested parties. Maatsen’s potential move to Villa hinges on the outcome of the Duran negotiations.

The Villains are also interested in a move for Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher. But he is focusing on the 2024 European Championship with England and doesn’t want to consider his future.

In addition to these talks, Chelsea will resume negotiations with Crystal Palace regarding £60 million-rated winger Michael Olise.

The Blues want to beat out competition from Bayern Munich, Newcastle United, and Manchester United for the France youth international’s signature.  

Chelsea are looking to get their business done early, as they target UEFA Champions League football under new boss Enzo Maresca.

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