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Barcelona open to summer offers for Alejandro Balde amid interest from Chelsea

Barcelona open to summer offers for Alejandro Balde amid interest from Chelsea

Chelsea could finally land long-term target Alejandro Balde amid reports Barcelona have softened their stance on a possible summer exit for the Spanish sensation.

Spanish news outlet AS claims the 20-year-old left-back is no longer untouchable and could leave Barca if a suitable offer arrives next summer.

Chelsea have previously been linked with a move for Balde, but the Spanish champions weren’t interested in striking a deal for their academy graduate.

However, Balde has struggled to impress this season, returning only a goal and an assist in 28 appearances across all competitions. He hasn’t played for the Blaugranas since picking up an injury in the 4-2 Copa del Rey defeat against Athletic Club.

The dazzling full-back went under the knife in Finland to correct an injury to the hamstring tendon in his right thigh and may not feature for Xavi Hernandez’s side for the remainder of the season.

Balde’s troubling campaign could be the reason Barca are finally open to doing business, but they will not push the Spanish international out of the club in the summer.

However, AS reports that the Catalan giants will consider any significant bids for the youngster, who would also need to greenlight a potential summer departure. 

Chelsea would be looking to bolster their ranks at left-back this summer after shipping off Lewis Hall to Newcastle United and Ian Maatsen to Borussia Dortmund.

Hall is on loan at Newcastle, but the Magpies have an option to make his stay permanent, while Maatsen has a £35 million release clause in his contract with the Blues.

Chelsea are willing to cut Maatsen loose this summer, especially if Mauricio Pochettino remains manager. That would leave Ben Chilwell and Marc Cucurella as the only left-back options, and both are injury-prone.

Balde’s potential arrival could also help facilitate an exit for Cucurella, who was strongly linked with a loan move to Manchester United last summer.

Cucurella has only featured 12 times in all competitions for Chelsea this season and has spent the past three months on the sidelines after undergoing ankle surgery in December.

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