As Per David Ornstein of The Athletic, Southampton midfielder Roméo Lavia has rejected Liverpool in favour of a move to Chelsea
A fee of around £50m plus add-ons is expected to be enough to complete the deal for the precocious midfielder- whilst no issues are expected to arise during negotiations, with relations between both Chelsea and Southampton said to be good.
Having already seen multiple bids turned down by The Saints, Liverpool have held a significant interest in the 19-year-old all summer, but- despite being ready to submit a fourth bid– have now seemingly been beaten to the signing by their Premier League rivals, and are understood to be aware of the midfielder’s choice.
The Belgian international signed for Southampton from Manchester City’s academy for around €15m just last year, and, despite his side suffering relegation, impressed in his debut season in senior football.
Furthermore, in his 26 Premier League starts, the former Anderlecht youth player often impressed from the base of midfield, showing his ability to read the game, cover ground and regain possession, as well as his composure and accuracy on-the-ball- where he was able to consistently evade pressure and progress the ball with line-breaking carries and passes.
The Blues’ move for Lavia comes with the expected arrival of Moisés Caicedo from Brighton. The 21-year-old also rejected a move to Anfield for one to Stamford Bridge, and is now set to make the move to Mauricio Pochettino’s side for a British record £115m- where he will join a raft of talented midfielders, such as Enzo Fernández (22), Carney Chukwuemeka (19), Conor Gallagher (23), Andrey Santos (19), and Lesley Ugochukwu (19).
Due to this depth, the latter two players- who joined for just under €40m combined this year- are expected to depart on loan for the coming season, whilst academy graduate Gallagher has also been linked with a permanent move away from his boyhood side- who have already rejected a bid from West Ham for the England international.
Travis Levison | Get Football