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Chelsea ready to cut their losses and offload Hakim Ziyech – Talk Chelsea

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Once hailed as “The Wizard” by adoring Ajax fans, Chelsea made a significant
investment back in 2020 to secure the services of Hakim Ziyech, although it now seems
he is considered surplus to requirements for manager Thomas Tuchel. As the player
seeks to reboot his career elsewhere, numerous rumours have emerged about potential
destinations.

Amongst the leading candidates right now are the reigning Serie A champions AC
Milan, although there is also said to be some considerable interest amongst Premier
League clubs, most notably at Leeds United. Another club that has been linked is
Manchester United, albeit mostly because they are currently led by former Ajax boss
Erik ten Hag, who coached great performances from Ziyech at the Dutch club prior to
his arrival at Chelsea.

As is often the case, one transfer deal can frequently cause a domino effect in the
market, which certainly makes things all the more interesting for those who bet on
potential player transfers. Some might even base their wagering on prediction models
like Poisson Distribution, which is quite a complex system covered by SBO recently, as
part of their series of detailed guides looking at different betting systems used by
punters.

Were we to back a move anywhere this summer for Ziyech, chances are that Leeds
United would seem the club most likely to turn their enquiries into a firm offer. While
the player might prefer to join a club that is competing in European competitions, the
current options would appear to be somewhat limited. The keenest initial interest
previously reported was from AC Milan, although that was only seen as a backup option
for another of their targets.

Milan have been mired in lengthy negotiations to sign Belgian sensation Charles De
Ketelaere, yet negotiations have turned into something of a saga. Leeds United made a
formal offer worth £33.9 million towards the end of June, matching the valuation set by
Club Brugge, although the player immediately indicated his preference to join the
Italians. They have eventually stumped up a bid which the Jupiler Pro League club is
willing to accept.

Given that De Ketelaere is now definitively out of reach for Leeds United, it seems they
have again turned their interest towards other targets under consideration, due to their
sporting director Victor Orta having already identified Ziyech as a potential signing.

The big plus for the Elland Road club is that Chelsea don’t want a massive fee,
apparently content to let Ziyech go for around £8million or thereabouts.
Leeds United would have every confidence they can tempt the player to join their cause,
principally by guaranteeing Ziyech a starring role in the team led by American coach
Jesse Marsch, who has already reinforced well during the summer. The Yorkshire club
has already made six important signings, funded by the cash received for Kalvin
Phillips joining Manchester City, and the deal which too Raphinha to Barcelona.

Furthermore, given that Ziyech is able to operate wide on the right, he could also be
regarded as the natural successor to fill the void left by Raphinha, as Leeds United have
yet to find a suitable replacement for the role in which the Brazilian excelled. While
selling the Moroccan so cheaply doesn’t seem to make much sense, the limited interest
has possibly forced the hand of Chelsea, who would rather get him off their wage bill as
quickly as they can.

This leads us back towards the prospect of a switch to Premier League rivals
Manchester United, who Ziyech had already rejected back in 2020, preferring a move to
London and Chelsea instead. His form at Ajax under Erik ten Hag was truly a joy to
behold, which means the new Red Devils boss might be interested in rekindling that
relationship. After the Dutchman signed Ziyech, he consistently performed brilliantly in
the Eredivisie.

While there may be no immediate departure on the cards for Ziyech, moving on before
the summer transfer window closes is practically a given, due to his team status having
reduced significantly under Tuchel. The only question pending is where he will end up,
with a move ‘up north’ the only valid escape rout from Stamford Bridge at the moment,
either to join Leeds United or Manchester United.

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