Chelsea have reportedly made the major decision to end their pursuit of Sevilla defender Jules Kounde less than two days before the transfer window shuts.
The reigning European champions had been linked with a move for the French centre-back throughout the summer, with Blues boss Thomas Tuchel keen on bolstering his defensive options.
It was previously reported that Sevilla man Kounde was the club’s main target in the current window, with recent suggestions implying that Chelsea were close to sealing a deal as deadline day edges closer.
However, The Athletic are now reporting that a deal is not going to be possible – in the current window at least – with Chelsea having elected to walk away from negotiations.
It is said that the club believed they had a verbal agreement with Sevilla over the signing of Kounde but that the Spanish outfit have added €15million (£12.8million) to their current asking price – an increase that the Blues are seemingly unwilling to match at this stage.
A deal is not expected to be revived should the La Liga club reduce their demands again, meaning that Chelsea are currently set to put faith in their current centre-back options.
Andreas Christensen, Antonio Rudiger and Cesar Azpilicueta have all started as Tuchel’s first choice trio this season, with the Dane in particular being handed special praise by the German following his performance in the 1-1 draw at Anfield.
Meanwhile, Trevoh Chalobah has impressed in pre-season so is certainly a viable option for the Blues throughout the campaign, with a loan move away from Stamford Bridge now looking unlikely.
Whether Chelsea choose to potentially revisit the signing of Kounde in the future remains to be seen but his immediate future lies at the Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan following the Blues’ latest decision.
He still has three years left to run on his contract in Andalusia, although he was absent from the club’s league game against Elche at the weekend.