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Chelsea look to buy-back Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake

Bengaluru, January 28: Chelsea are considering activating the buy-back clause in Nathan Ake's contract either in January or at the end of the season just two years after selling him to Bournemouth as the Cherries have started preparing for life without the star centre-back.

The 23-year-old is being scouted by most of the Premier League sides including Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United and even has major suitors abroad but Chelsea are believed to have a buy-back clause or at least a first option in Ake's Bournemouth deal, meaning they are the clear favourites for his signature anyway.

Chelsea, however, have to pay £40million to re-secure his services - double for what they sold him for in 2016.

Meanwhile, manager Eddie Howe has resigned to the fact that he will be losing the player and as a precaution has dissed out £12m for the signing of Welsh defender Mepham from Brentford to ensure there would be cover in defence should the 23-year-old leave.

The Dutch defender was at Chelsea's academy aged 16 but went on to force his way into the senior team before former boss Antonio Conte deemed him surplus to requirements. But in the last one and a half year, Ake has established himself as one of the league's most exciting prospects. He has netted three goals in 22 appearances for the Cherries this season and has earned 10 caps for Holland in the meantime.

Chelsea Centre back duo Gary Cahill and David Luiz are set to leave the club in the Summer, leaving Maurizio Sarri light at the back once the season ends. The Italian manager favours defenders with good feet and Ake having the trait of a ball playing centre-back could easily chip in Luiz's shoe.

Chelsea are going through a busy transfer window this winter having already confirming a deal for winger Christian Pulisic and landing Gonzalo Higuain on a season-long loan deal. The West London side are now linked with a move for right-back Elseid Hysaj as a cover for captain Azpilicueta.

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Story first published: Monday, January 28, 2019, 15:30 [IST]
Other articles published on Jan 28, 2019