Chelsea make surprise move for striker Nicolae Stanciu


Nicolae Stanciu, 23, has emerged as a surprise transfer target for Chelsea.

The Steaua Bucharest midfielder netted 14 times last season and was a pivotal attacking force for club and country. That shows no sign of abating this season with Stanciu grabbing both Steaua goals in their 2 – 0 win over Sparta Prague this week.

Stanciu was a key member of the Romanian squad at Euro 2016 this summer, scoring both their goals as they slumped to the bottom of Group A taking a solitary point from Switzerland.

New Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has already added Michy Batshuayi, 23, and N’Golo Kante, 25, to his squad this summer but has been frustrated in his recent attempts to sign players.

The Italian remains interested in Napoli centre back Kalidou Koulibaly, 25, but the Serie A club have little inclination to sell having already lost Gonzalo Higuain, 28, to Juventus.

German international Shkodran Mustafi, 24, remains of interest but at the moment seems closer to a move to north London rivals Arsenal. The Valencia defender is coveted by Conte for his versatility.

The Blues received a boost yesterday with Atletico Madrid ending their interest in striker Diego Costa, 27. “His place,” according to Atletico president Enrique Cerezo, “is with Chelsea”.


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