Chelsea are close to announcing the signing of Atletico Madrid midfielder Arda Turan, according to various sources.
The Turkey international is expected to join the Premier League champions in the coming days, with Blues left-back Filipe Luis expected to return to the Spanish capital shortly thereafter.
Turan is one of the most popular Atletico Madrid players and has been a major force during the club’s renaissance under manager Diego Simeone.
In 2014, The Guardian ranked the midfielder as the 38th best player in the world on its list of the Top 100 Players.
The Turkey international joined the La Liga club for £9 million from his boyhood club Galatasaray in August 2011 – the transfer fee made him the most expensive Turkish footballer of all-time.
During his time in the Spanish capital, Atletico Madrid have won a Europa League title, UEFA Super Cup, the Spanish Supercopa, a Copa del Rey and a La Liga title – while also finishing Champions League runners-up last season.
In February, Ahmet Bulut (Turan’s agent) told Mundo Deportivo that the 28-year-old would leave the club at the end of the season with his desired destination being one of the “top eight clubs in Europe”.
Bulut went on to say if a deal could not be negotiated with one of those clubs, Turan would remain in Madrid.
Late last week, the midfielder’s representative told the Spanish publication AS that Turan is keen to play in the Premier League and discussions were currently taking place with “the best clubs in England and in European football”.
“[Arda’s] will is to leave and to play in the Premier League, that is the path he would like to take to continue his career,” Bulut said.
“We are currently in talks with three teams but I cannot reveal the names of the clubs. However, I can tell you that they are the best in England and in European football.”
Yesterday, Turan himself took to his official Twitter account to clarify his agent’s statements.
“The transfer rumors are not entirely correct,” the player tweeted. “My agent is currently in touch with 3-4 clubs. I will update you all if a deal is made.”
As for Filipe Luis, the left-back joined Chelsea last summer after completing a £15.8 million move from Atletico Madrid.
The Brazilian defender was expected to fill the void left by Ashley Cole, who signed for AS Roma in July 2014. However, the full-back found himself on the bench for the better part of the season due to the exceptional play of Cesar Azpilicueta.
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