Chelsea have stepped up their pursuit of Bologna midfielder Amadou Diawara, according to the latest reports in Italy.
The Blues have maintained interest in the youngster since last season, and now they are planning to place a £18 million bid for him. Italian publication Tuttosport (via talkSPORT) claims that Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is a huge fan of the 18-year-old and wants to bring him to Stamford Bridge.
Diawara made an immediate impact after signing for the Serie A club from Serie D club San Marino last summer. On the back of his solid performances, he cemented his place in Bologna’s first team and managed 34 league appearances last season.
However, the West London club face competition from AS Roma and Napoli for the talented teenager.
Chelsea have also decided against selling midfielder Nemanja Matic in the ongoing transfer window, reports Daily Mail.
The Serbian international, who played a major role in the Blues’ 2014-2015 league-winning campaign, suffered a drop in form last season and lost his place in the starting eleven to John Obi Mikel under Guus Hiddink.
He was strongly linked with an exit from Stamford Bridge, with Juventus and Manchester United interested in his services. However, Blues manager Antonio Conte wants to keep the 27-year-old at the club despite his plans to sign N’Golo Kante from Leicester City.