Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho was present in the stands to watch Spain’s 1-0 victory over Ukraine in Kiev, and the main purpose of his visit was to have a closer look at the Ukraine forward Andriy Yarmolenko.
Mourinho has reportedly received positive scouting reports on Yarmolenko which encouraged him to scout the player in person.
According to reports from Spain, Chelsea are preparing a formal bid in the next few weeks to sign the Kiev forward, who would cost around €25m. Mourinho has spoken with the player’s agent, Mikhail Gulordava, and it seems Chelsea are laying the groundwork necessary to sign the forward in the January transfer window.
The Chelsea manager has apparently been informed that the player would consider a move to the Premier League, although La Liga remains his first option.
Yarmolenko was offered to Barcelona during the summer transfer window, but Barca manager Luis Enrique didn’t show enough interest back then. While Barcelona still retain an interest in the player, it seems Chelsea are more likely to sign him.
The 25-year-old is a versatile attacking forward who can play on either flank. He has been in fine form this season, scoring 10 goals already, and has impressed in the Champions League.
Chelsea will face Kiev in their next Champions League match, where Mourinho will get another chance to watch the player closely.
While Sport, a Catalan based newspaper, believes Yarmolenko would snub Chelsea offers in favour of Barcelona, but doubts remain whether the La Liga champions are at all interested in signing him.
It remains to be seen whether Barcelona make any formal approach for Yarmolenko when their transfer ban is lifted in January. The Blaugrana are reportedly showing a keen interest in Liverpool’s attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho, and may test Liverpool’s resolve with a formal bid in January, but the Reds are highly unlikely to sell him in the January transfer window.