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Chelsea and Tuchel identify Juventus star as Saul’s replacement

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Thomas Tuchel and Chelsea may follow a previously explored path in their search for midfield reinforcements ahead of the 2022/23 season.

Adrien Rabiot and Premier League-leaning transfer speculation are synonymous at the moment and this window appears to be no exception.

Rabiot has endured a rough patch of late, with his form paralleling that of his club Juventus. The Bianconeri finished fourth for the second successive season in 2021/22, nine points behind third-place Napoli and 16 behind champion-elect AC Milan.

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Despite receiving criticism for the level of his performances, Rabiot played a prominent role under manager Massimiliano Allegri, starting 28th in 32 appearances.

That said, the French international’s future at the Allianz Stadium looks bleak amid reports that he is among a contingent to be sidelined this summer.

Fabrizio Romano reported last week that Rabiot, 27, had been included in the transfer list of Juventus, the club open to offers for the player they signed for free in 2019.

Are Premier League clubs looking back at Serie A?

Previously from PSG before emigrating to Italy, he did so in search of a senior position. Despite being granted it, Rabiot is believed to reciprocate his employer’s train of thought.

His current contract expires in 2023 and negotiations for an extension broke down after he was notified of a pay cut due to Juventus’ financial precariousness.

The midfielder currently earns €7m net + bonuses and if he’s looking to match or even better that figure, staying in Turin doesn’t seem like an option.

Premier League clubs taking advantage of their Serie A counterparts’ financial difficulties are becoming a pattern with Newcastle, Manchester United and Chelsea among those who have already shown an interest in Rabiot.

Will Chelsea replace Saul Niguez with Adrien Rabiot?

Chelsea, or more specifically Thomas Tuchel, seems to have a history with Adrien Rabiot.

The German manager was open to the idea of ​​signing him in January, but the decision was blocked by Saul Niguez’s lack of loan departure, Italian outlet Corriere Dello Sport reports, quoted by Sport Witness.

Niguez has now returned to parent club Atletico Madrid after an uninspiring spell at Stamford Bridge that saw him make just five Premier League starts.

While Rabiot has a different make-up than the Spaniard, both are more familiar with the ‘8’ role due to complete midfielders.

Perhaps attributed to his current team’s pragmatic approach, Rabiot’s influence has shifted away from an attacking sense to a focus on defensive responsibilities.

Tuchel’s 3-4-3 formation relies on two areas of two, his full-backs and their partnership in central midfield. When fielding a double pivot in midfield, it is essential that the pair have a balanced combination of attributes.

N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic are examples of this. The former is more defensive and vice versa, but both are experts in what the other masters.

Taking the above into account, Rabiot seems well suited and could play a similar role to compatriot Paul Pogba alongside Kante at international level. Plus, his 6-foot-2 frame means he can offer a different element to Tuchel’s current options.

What is the position of Manchester United and Newcastle on Rabiot?

Manchester United representatives seem concerned about Frenkie de Jong and until there is clarity on the Barcelona midfielder it is unlikely we will see any move with Adrien Rabiot.

Although, Rabiot could act as an almost equal replacement for the aforementioned Pogba, who seems set to return to Juventus.

Newcastle, on the other hand, have held initial consultations with the Rabiot camp, Corriere Dello Sport reports again via Sport Witness.

However, the Magpies’ proposal has not been received with open arms, as the player is not convinced of the project, regardless of the potential profits on offer.

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