James UleySenior Writer, ESPN FC3 minutes to read
The exact structure of the deal is still being debated, but Chelsea have indicated it will be improved on the £111m Liverpool offered Brighton for Caicedo on Friday.
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Sources have confirmed to ESPN that the 21-year-old has made it clear he wants a move to Stamford Bridge even after Liverpool agree terms to Brighton.
And having negotiated with Brighton for much of the summer – several bids being turned down, the latest being £80m – Chelsea are now close to a deal that, including add-ons, would exceed the £106.8m they paid Benfica for. Enzo Fernandez in January.
Sources tell ESPN that the deal is not finalized but speculation is growing that a deal is close.
Chelsea pulled out of a move to sign US international Tyler Adams from Leeds amid a row over the payment structure surrounding his £20m release clause and decided instead to use that money to help pursue other options.
Caicedo, who will sign a long-term contract if a transfer is agreed, has been new coach Mauricio Pochettino’s No. 1 target all summer. Pochettino told ESPN in an exclusive interview last month that Chelsea were in dire need of reinforcements in midfield.
In addition to Caicedo, Chelsea are hoping to win over Liverpool to another midfielder as they seek to secure a deal with Southampton for Romeo Lavia.
Southampton have rejected at least three offers for Liverpool, but Chelsea are believed to be willing to offer more than the 19-year-old’s £50m valuation.
Liverpool face Chelsea in the Premier League at Stamford Bridge on Sunday and Reds owner John W. Henry is expected to be in attendance.
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