Chelsea's £174m aggressive transfer approach serves notice to Man United

Sir Jim Ratcliffe prior to the Emirates FA Cup Final match between Manchester City and Manchester United at Wembley Stadium
-Credit: (Image: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Chelsea have been in the headlines again over the last few days as the club continues to attack the transfer window. It’s a situation that Manchester United will be watching closely over the next few days and weeks.

The Blues have built up a reputation of big spending over the transfer window since American businessman Todd Boehly took over the club as part of a consortium of owners. Despite concerns about the Premier League’s financial rules, it seems that it is going to be no different this time around.

Chelsea have already completed a £19 million deal to sign Aston Villa youngster Omari Kellyman. But they have been linked with some other big transfers over the last few days.

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The Blues are in talks with newly-promoted Leicester City over a deal for Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall. The Foxes are said to value the midfielder at £40 million, but Chelsea could try to include players in the deal to try and get that price down.

Chelsea are also said to have made a second approach to Newcastle for star striker Alexander Isak. The Magpies are reluctant to sell, despite their need to raise funds before the Premier League’s Profitability and Sustainability cut-off at the end of the month.

If they were to cash in, Newcastle are said to be demanding a price of over the £115 million that Chelsea paid for Moises Caicedo last summer, add on the £40m for Dewsbury-Hall and £19 million for Kellyman it could take their total spend to £174m, even before the end of June, that’s not counting the £10 million-plus compensation that the club paid to Leicester City for new head coach Enzo Maresca and his backroom staff.

While the two deals for Dewsbury-Hall and Isak may not go through, the fact that Chelsea are moving for their targets early in the transfer window should serve as an example to United. With more certainty over Erik ten Hag’s future at the club, United can now move on to implementing their transfer plans.

The earlier that the club can get their targets into the club, the better for everyone involved. Delaying would mean that any new arrivals will have less time on the training pitch during pre-season, and could risk United losing out to other teams, and then not having time to chase alternative targets.

The current summer transfer window is a big one for United with it being the first under the new ownership of Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Ineos. If the club want a refresh of the squad then work will have to be done early in the window to avoid risking panicking and running out of time in the final weeks.

While Chelsea’s approach to the transfer windows over the last couple of seasons has drawn some criticism. The approach to going in aggressively and getting deals done early is something that United can learn from.