Chelsea are interested in signing Celtic prospect Karamoko Dembele either in January or the next summer transfer window, according to an exclusive report from 90min.com.
The outlet believes that, despite the Blues currently serving an ongoing transfer ban, they’re looking at Dembele and lining up a potential bid.
That ban lasts until next summer, but Chelsea are set to launch an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. If successful it means they could be free to make signings in January.
What’s Dembele’s current situation?
The young attacker signed his first professional contract with the club back in December 2018. It’s a deal that keeps him at the club until the summer of 2021.
Since then he’s gone on to make his senior debut for the club and was included by Neil Lennon in the match squad for last season’s Scottish Cup Final, as an unused substitute.
This season the academy graduate has battled injury and fitness problems and has had to settle for Reserve football.
The player has had a hype behind him for years, ever since bursting into our U20s Development Squad as a young teenager.
In his brief showings for the senior sides in both competitive and friendly action, he’s certainly looked the part.
Dembele was born in London and has recently reportedly made the decision to focus on developing with the English FA rather than the Scottish FA, in terms of international selection (The Herald).
Chelsea, who will hope to become more competitive in the Premier League and Champions League powered by the riches on offer in England, also have a history of signing young talents from Glasgow – first signing Islam Feruz from the Bhoys, then Billy Gilmour from Rangers.
It’s a route that appears to me, sadly, could be tempting for the youngster and his family to pursue. The English side have demonstrated with Gilmour and other prospects that there’s a pathway to the first-team with Frank Lampard in charge.
Hopefully, our ongoing relationship with the player is strong enough and that any interest in him is rebuffed.
If these reports are true and Chelsea’s interest firms up, it’d be fantastic if Lennon and the rest of the coaching staff could convince him his future is best served attempting to break into the Hoops side.
Ultimately, Celtic still control his immediate future, although with just over 18 months left on his current contract we’re not in as strong a position as we have been with others leaving the club.