Chelsea and Barcelona in the race for Ajax’s Tagliafico

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Chelsea are still in search of a worthy replacement for Ashley Cole six years after his departure. They have now set their sights on Nicolas Tagliafico but face competition from Barcelona for his signature.

Tagliafico could be the second Ajax player to arrive at Stamford Bridge next season following Hakim Ziyech’s already confirmed move to Chelsea.

Chelsea’s current left-backs are subject of interest from other clubs. Marcos Alonso and Emerson Palmieri have both been linked with moves back to the Italian Serie A.

This necessitates the search for reinforcements which has seen several names linked with a move.

Tagliafico, who signed for Ajax in 2018 from Independiente in his homeland, could be viewed by Chelsea as an alternative to their primary left-back target, England international Ben Chilwell.

The Argentina international, 27, scored five goals and supplied five assists for Ajax last season.

Tagliafico

Ajax have set a valuation of about £22.3m (25 million Euros) for the Argentine. That would represent a fantastic piece of business for whoever gets him.

He was a part of the Ajax team that stunned the world and reached the semi-finals of the Champions League last season.

The 27-year-old is another example of a modern-day full-back that is comfortable on the ball and contributes offensively.

Chelsea have so far failed to reach a deal with Leicester for Chilwell and the two clubs are poles apart on valuation, although the Foxes are believed to have softened their original demands for an £80m transfer fee.

Back in May, Tagliafico’s agent admitted that the left-back would be looking for a new club in the summer.

Ricardo Schlieper said: “We are looking for a transfer for Tagliafico.

“We have agreed with Ajax that he would leave this year. After having spent two and a half seasons at the club, it’s the ideal moment for it.

“I will never mention the name of the club we are speaking with because it hurts the negotiations for us and the player.”

However, Chelsea are also monitoring the availability of Real Madrid’s Sergio Reguilon, who was voted as the best left-back in La Liga last season, while on loan at Sevilla.