Chelsea manager Antonio Conte will reportedly have to break the bank to have any hope of landing Kalidou Coulibaly from Napoli in the summer.
The centre-half has been on Chelsea, and Everton’s, radar for over a year, with both clubs prepared to battle it out for his services this summer, but any plans to sign the talented 25-year-old may be halted as Napoli president claims the club will want big money to let him go.
President Aurelio De Laurentiis wants a bid in the region of £60m and also says he wants a solid replacement secured before even considering allowing Coulibaly to exit Napoli.
He said: “Chelsea had offered €55m (£47m), but I told Conte that I could not give him up without first having a worthy substitute.
“[I will not sell him] unless Sarri , boss Maurizio Sarri, tells, me.
“I have Tom, Dick and Harry who are reliable: you give up who you want.”
While this news plays more into the hands of Chelsea than Everton, with the London club able to spend much more than the Toffees, it also means they will have to fork out a large sum if they are to have any hope of bringing Couliably to Stamford Bridge.
While spending big has not warned Chelsea away from targets before, such a large amount for Coulibaly may encourage them to look elsewhere for reinforcements.