Chelsea agree £50m deal to sign Raheem Sterling from Manchester City | Transfer window

Chelsea’s new owners are poised to make their first marquee signing after agreeing a fee worth up to £50m with Manchester City for Raheem Sterling.

The England winger has already agreed personal terms on a five-year contract with an option of a further year. Chelsea, who will make Sterling their highest earner by handing him a deal worth just over £300,000 a week, will complete the signing once the 27-year-old passes his medical.

The deal is a major boost for Chelsea’s new co-owner, Todd Boehly, who has taken temporary charge of the club’s recruitment. Thomas Tuchel wants to upgrade his attack and identified Sterling as a key target at the start of the summer. Tuchel wants more ruthlessness in the final third and he has held positive talks with Sterling about where he will fit in at Chelsea, who are also in talks with City over a deal to sign the Netherlands centre-back Nathan Aké.

City have not been minded to block either player from leaving. Sterling, who hopes to link up with Chelsea’s squad on their pre-season tour of America soon, slipped down the pecking order in Pep Guardiola’s attack in the past two seasons. Aké, who has already agreed personal terms on a return to Chelsea, also wants to start on a more regular basis.

Chelsea need to strengthen their defence after losing Antonio Rüdiger and Andreas Christensen on free transfers. A deal for Aké should be straightforward as long as they offer City over £40m. Tuchel is a long-time admirer of Aké, who came through Chelsea’s academy before joining Bournemouth in 2017, and tried to sign him when he managed Borussia Dortmund.

In addition to Aké, Chelsea’s defensive targets include Juventus’s Matthijs de Ligt, Paris Saint-Germain’s Presnel Kimpembe, Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly and Sevilla’s Jules Koundé. Bayern Munich are also trying to sign De Ligt.

Chelsea want to hand Tuchel significant funds this summer. They remain in the race to sign Raphinha after agreeing a £55m fee with Leeds for the Brazilian winger. They face competition from Barcelona for Raphinha, whose preference is to move to Spain.

Armando Broja was not part of the travelling party that flew to the US on Saturday. It is hoped that the 20-year-old striker, who is wanted by West Ham, Everton, Napoli and Newcastle, will link up with his teammates this coming week.

Also not boarding the plane to Los Angeles were N’Golo Kanté, whose contract at the club expires next summer, and Ruben Loftus-Cheek. Chelsea say this was due to their Covid vaccination status. Chelsea are set to play three matches Stateside, the first against the Mexican side Club América next Saturday. They then face Charlotte FC before a game against Arsenal in Florida on 23 July.

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