Chelsea news: Todd Boehly consortium named preferred bidder as Rudiger replacement identified

Here is your Chelsea morning digest on Saturday, April 30.

Chelsea linked with PSG star

Chelsea are reportedly interested in signing Paris Saint-Germain defender Presnel Kimpembe to replace wantaway star Antonio Rudiger. The German centre-back confirmed earlier this week that he will not sign a new contract with the club, and has been heavily linked with a move to Real Madrid.

The Blues are in the market for defenders as they’re also set to lose Andreas Christensen on a free transfer when his deal expires in June. And according to Goal, the west London outfit have identified Kimpembe and Atletico Madrid’s Jose Gimenez as potential solutions to their defensive issues.

However, Kimpembe’s contract at the Parc des Princes runs until the summer of 2024 and PSG are expected to offer the 26-year-old a new deal. Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel previously worked with the France defender during his spell in charge of the French giants.

READ MORE: Every word Thomas Tuchel said on Frank Lampard admiration, Saul future, James, Chelsea team news

Boehly consortium named preferred bidder

The consortium led by Los Angeles Dodgers part-owner Todd Boehly has been selected as the preferred bidder for Chelsea and has reportedly secured a period of exclusivity as it attempts to complete its multi-billion pound takeover from Roman Abramovich.

It’s been another dramatic day in the process of taking the club off the hands of Abramovich, who remains under sanctions by the UK government and EU as part of their respective responses to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. What appeared to be the final three bidders were awaiting a decision from Raine when the news broke that INEOS owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe had submitted a late bid worth £4.25bn for the club.

“We are making this investment as fans of the beautiful game – not as a means to turn a profit,” a statement released by INEOS, which also owns Ligue 1 side Nice, read, “We do that with our core business. The club is rooted in its community and its fans. And it is our intention to invest in Chelsea FC for that reason.”

Read the full story here.

Trio return to training

Thomas Tuchel has been handed a timely boost ahead of Chelsea’s trip to Everton this weekend, with Andreas Christensen, Ross Barkley and Mateo Kovacic all returning to first-team training, having recovered from their respective illnesses and injuries.

Christensen was absent for the win over West Ham United on Sunday and didn’t travel with the Blues squad for last night’s 1-1 draw against Manchester United at Old Trafford, a game that Barkley was also ruled out for. Kovacic, meanwhile, has been absent since he was forced off with an ankle ligament injury during Chelsea’s FA Cup semi-final win over Crystal Palace.

There were concerns that Kovacic, who has been Tuchel’s standout midfielder this term, would miss the FA Cup final against Liverpool next month and spend the rest of the campaign on the sidelines. Thankfully for Chelsea, that hasn’t proved the case with the Croatia international back in training today.

Read the full story here.