Chelsea Agree To Sign ‘Hungarian Virgil Van Dijk’

KEY POINTS

  • Fenerbahce defender Attila Szalai has impressed in both club and international football
  • Szalai is reportedly now on the verge of joining Chelsea
  • Blues boss Thomas Tuchel reveals his real stance on future transfers

Chelsea is close to bringing in another world-class talent to the English Premier League.

After being rumored to be on the radar of the Blues, Fenerbahce center-back Attila Szalai has now agreed to join Chelsea, CNN Turkey reported.

The report said that Fenerbahce has been open to cashing in for Szalai and has now let the highly-rated defender leave for Chelsea for around €23.4 million ($26.7 million).

Szalai is set to sign a six-year contract with the Blues and is expected to earn € 4 million ($4.5 million) annually, the report added.

The 23-year-old is one of the most coveted players in Hungary.

After impressing in his maiden season in the Turkish Super Lig and international fixtures for Hungary, Szalai captured the attention of top European clubs with Chelsea not wasting time to pounce on him.

While the Blues have yet to know how Szalai will fit in English football, being labeled as the “Hungarian Virgil Van Dijk” certainly gives Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel a hint of what the defender is capable of on the pitch.

Atop that, Szalai has also earned rave reviews from people he has worked with in the past, including his Hungary Under-21 coach Michael Boris.

“If you ask him, he would remember that I told him he is the future of Hungarian football,” Boris told First Time Finish of Szalai in July.

“It was clear he would make a bigger future step than his peers because they were not as interested in trying to improve,” the coach added.

Chelsea has been keen on adding formidable defenders this season. Prior to Szalai, the Blues have already re-signed breakout star Trevoh Chalobah.

However, shortly after securing a deal for Chalobah, Tuchel hinted that more signings and departures are likely to happen as he stressed the need to always “evaluate again” every transfer window.

“I think every transfer period you need to evaluate again [because] your opinion changes, players change, you have evolvement in the group, you have an atmosphere that you build, you see who is absolutely reliable and these connections build up and create something special hopefully in the group,” Tuchel previously explained.

“So you cannot say what we tried in the summer did not happen so we will try again for sure in the winter [and] clearly, Trevoh is now here with us and he deserves to be here with us. It had nothing to do with if we can sign another central defender or not.”

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