With N’Golo Kante close to joining Chelsea from Leicester City, the Blues must shift their attention to other areas of need. A top class defender is required this summer and one of the names being considered is AS Roma’s central defender Kostas Manolas, who is also wanted by Premier League rivals Arsenal.
Chelsea have been heavily linked with a move for Kalidou Koulibaly but with Napoli demanding a high transfer fee, it seems the Blues have backed out of the race. According to reports from Italian newspaper La Gazzetta Dello Sport, both Chelsea and Arsenal have offered deals worth €4m-per-year for Manolas, more than what he earns at Roma.
The only fly in the ointment remains with agreeing to the transfer fee thanks to Manolas’ complex transfer agreement when he joined Roma from Turkish club Olympiakos.
Football Leaks revealed back in April the 2014 transfer agreement between Roma and Olympiakos would require the Giallorossi to pay the Greek side either €6.5m or half of a transfer fee, whichever is greater, and the Italian side would need to pay further €6.5m payment on September 1st to make it a permanent move.
There was also another additional clause: if Manolas is sold to a club for more than €13m then Roma would be committed to paying Olympiakos half of the transfer fee for that deal. Roma value the player highly and would demand a fee around €44m for the defender which means they would only receive around €22m from the sale.
It leaves Roma with a very little incentive to sell the Greek defender. The player, however, could be angling a move, and his agent has recently said that they have rejected a contract extension from the Serie A giants.
Manolas would be a good signing for both Chelsea and Arsenal. He is a solid defender who is very good at blocking and tackling. He would certainly be an upgrade over the current options at both Chelsea and Arsenal, however, his previous transfer agreements with Roma could prevent him from exploring a new career in the Premier League.