Chelsea have ramped up their pursuit of Everton left-back Lucas Digne on loan for the remainder of the season.
The Blues are in desperate need of cover for the injured Ben Chilwell, who reports suggest will be out for the remainder of the season after undergoing surgery on his ACL.
Thomas Tuchel currently only has Marcos Alonso in that position and is eyeing the 28-year-old Frenchman in order to add depth.
But The Express claim that while Everton would be open to Digne joining Chelsea on loan, they are unlikely to sanction the move unless it includes an option to buy at the end of the season.
That is down to Digne falling out of favour with Toffees manager Rafa Benitez, who has made the player aware that he can leave Goodison Park.
Everton have already secured an £18millon replacement in Vitaliy Mykolenko for the January transfer window and are therefore looking to flog the French international permanently.
Meanwhile, Chelsea had been reluctant to sign another fullback until they were advised that Chilwell should undergo surgery.
Midfielders Callum Hudson-Odoi and Saul Niguez have recently been asked to plug the gap, though Chelsea are now looking at longer-term solutions.
Do you think Digne will go to Chelsea in January? Let us know in the comments section.
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Digne would provide excellent cover for the injured Englishman while possessing plenty of top-level Premier League and international experience.
Yet, along with Chelsea having to give Everton assurances over a permanent deal, the Blues also face the challenge of other clubs like Napoli being interested in the defender.
Reports by Goal claim that should the west Londoners fail in their pursuit of Digne, they will be forced to recall either Emerson Palmieri or Ian Maatsen from their respective loan spells.
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