Azpilicueta exit ‘closer than ever’ as Barcelona ‘hold talks’ with Chelsea ace

Cesar Azpilicueta is nearing closer to an exit from Chelsea this summer after holding talks with Barcelona.

The Spain international had been in the last year of his contract but the Blues triggered a clause that extended it by another season. It meant that the defender could not leave as a free agent at the end of June, like some of his teammates did.

Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen both signed for Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively this summer after their deals came to an end at the end of last campaign. It has seen Thomas Tuchel's defence ransacked of two players that have played pivotal parts for the club – particularly in their 2021 Champions League victory over Manchester City.

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But the exodus is not over yet with Azpilicueta still nearing a departure despite his contract being extended after holding talks with Barcelona. According to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, Barca have already agreed personal terms with the 32-year-old.

Chelsea's new owner Todd Boehly was spotted in Barcelona on Thursday night meeting with Blaugrana chiefs as he looks to build relationships in the European market. Among many topics was the situation surrounding Azpilicueta, who is keen on a return to Spain this summer, while a move is closer than ever.

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However, whether the Blues are willing to lose their captain for nothing remains to be seen after already losing a big voice in the dressing room in the shape of Rudiger. Barca are not willing to pay a high fee as a result of their own financial situation.

The American billionaire has had his work cut out for him this summer after the departures of Bruce Buck, Marina Granovskaia and Petr Cech – who would have usually all been involved in the transfer process. It has meant that this has been a slow start to the transfer window for the Stamford Bridge outfit, who are the only team in the top six not to make a signing.

Raheem Sterling, Matthijs de Ligt and Raphinha have been strongly linked with moves to west London while Frenkie de Jong is also of interest and might have been spoken about. Barcelona are also keen to sign Marcos Alonso while Boehly has already looked to utilise his squad in player deals after offering Timo Werner to Juventus for De Ligt.


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