Chelsea will keep ‘close eye’ on ‘world-class’ £87m star at World Cup – GiveMeSport

Chelsea will be keeping a close eye on Portugal forward Rafael Leao during the World Cup, says journalist Pete O’Rourke.

The AC Milan star has been heavily linked with a move to Stamford Bridge, and O’Rourke thinks the Blues’ interest in him will only grow if he shines in Qatar.

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What is the latest news involving Leao?

According to Calciomercato, Milan are struggling to agree a new deal with Leao, whose current contract expires in 2024.

It now looks like the Italian giants will have to consider selling the 23-year-old, with the same outlet claiming that they will listen to €100m (£87m) offers.

If that is the case, one club who could make a move for Leao is Chelsea. As per 90min, the west London club are confident that they can lure the Portugal international to Stamford Bridge amid his contract stand-off at the San Siro.

Leao is having another good season at Milan, recently scoring in his side’s 2-1 win against Fiorentina.

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What has O’Rourke said about Leao and Chelsea?

O’Rourke is expecting Chelsea and Graham Potter to follow Leao closely at this year’s World Cup.

Speaking to GIVEMESPORT, the journalist said: “I’m sure they’ll be keeping a close eye on him during the World Cup, and if he does really well for Portugal, Chelsea will be very keen to bring him to Stamford Bridge.

“But on the flip side of that, it will probably only increase his price tag as well if he does have a good World Cup with Portugal.”

Read more: January Transfer Window 2023: When Does It Begin, Rumours and Everything You Need To Know

Is Leao worth £87m?

In this market, it is not a ludicrous amount of money for Milan to ask for. Leao is definitely one of the most in-form attackers in Europe right now.

This season, he is in double figures for goal contributions, while last term, it was the same story. In 34 league appearances, the Milan man scored 11 times as Stefano Pioli’s side went on to win the Serie A title.

What is truly impressive about Leao, though, is his ability on the ball. Over the last year, he has ranked in the 96th percentile for dribbles completed among attacking midfielders and wingers (via FBref).

The former Lille player has also ranked in the 91st percentile for touches in the penalty area, so this is a footballer who causes a lot of problems for the opposition.

Leao is still just 23, but sports journalist Siavoush Fallahi feels that he is already playing at a “world-class” level and, when you consider all of the above, it is hard to argue against that.

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