Todd Boehly’s Chelsea reign has certainly been a tumultuous one, with the Blues now certain to finish in the bottom half of the Premier League table.
Thomas Tuchel and Graham Potter were both sacked by the American, who was keen for instant success following an investment of over £550m on new signings.
However, this will not stop Chelsea from spending big again this summer, so long as they can move on some of the deadwood at Stamford Bridge in order to abide by Financial Fair Play rules.
One man who has been linked with a summer move to the Blues is Jules Kounde, in what would be an opportunity for Boehly to avenge his 2022 heartbreak over the Frenchman after he joined Barcelona ahead of Chelsea last summer.
Could Chelsea sign Jules Kounde?
According to Diario Sport, the France international is now keen to leave Camp Nou this summer as Xavi has rarely utilised him in his natural centre-back position, instead playing him as a right-back – or even as a midfielder, as he did in the recent game against Real Sociedad.
The Spanish manager had reportedly promised to play Kounde as a centre-back, and as that has not materialised, he is now considering his future with the La Liga champions, with Barcelona more than willing to sell if he isn’t fully committed to the club.
It is suggested that Chelsea would be willing to renew their interest in the 24-year-old and would be willing to pay more than Barcelona paid to Sevilla last summer, with previous reports suggesting that a fee of €75m (£65m) would be enough to see him leave.
Would Kounde be a good signing for Chelsea?
It is easy to understand why Boehly was so keen to sign Kounde last summer given he was rated as one of the best young centre-backs in Europe, and he has only enhanced that reputation with Barcelona and France this season.
In 27 La Liga appearances, the versatile defender has one goal and three assists with a strong 6.97 rating from WhoScored for his performances, which is only bettered by Reece James and Thiago Silva in Chelsea’s squad.
While Boehly already has young centre-backs such as Wesley Fofana and Benoit Badiashile at his disposal, Kounde already has experience at the very top level, having won the Europa League with Sevilla and appeared in a World Cup final with France.
Football analyst Marcus Bring dubbed him “sensational” back in 2021, while sports technology manager Alan Feehely labelled him as an “absolute baller” that year, which suggests that he has been highly rated for a number of years now.
While it would be another expensive outlay for Boehly, Kounde has what it takes to be a top defender for the next decade and there will be few opportunities to prise him away from one of Europe’s elite clubs, so the chairman must take advantage of his unhappiness at Barcelona and sign him this summer, one year later than originally planned.