Chelsea owner Todd Boehly looking to steal Real Madrid star for fifth January signing

Chelsea are reportedly weighing up whether to swoop for Real Madrid youngster Rafa Marin, who could be available in a cut-price deal. Co-owner Todd Boehly has already secured four signings so far this month and Marin would be another player for the future, although other clubs are thought to be interested too. 

In Benoit Badiashile, David Datro Fofana and Andrey Santos, Chelsea have already swooped for three players under the age of 21 so far in January. A loan move for 23-year-old Joao Felix also enhances the youthfulness of Graham Potter’s squad and there is plenty of time left in the month to push for more arrivals. 

Boehly appears to be doing just that and Marin, 20, could become their fifth signing of what is shaping up to be a second prolific transfer window in a row. The Blues set the record for the most money spent by a club in a single window during the summer when their new owners sanctioned a £273million spree. 

According to The Telegraph, Marin is a player that Chelsea have scouted extensively and a January transfer has been touted as possible, even if a deal is more likely to unfold in the summer. 

By that point, the Real Madrid centre-back will have just 12 months left on his contract and, so far, Los Blancos have been unable to convince him to sign renewed terms. Juventus and Red Bull Leipzig are also thought to be interested in Marin, who could cost up to £10m. 

The 6ft 3in star is yet to play with Madrid’s first team but he is a regular with their B side, Real Madrid Castilla, who play in the Spanish third division. Marin could become the latest in a long line of promising youngsters to make the voyage to Stamford Bridge in recent months. 

Boehly and co splashed out on the likes of Carney Chukwuemeka, Gabriel Slonina and Cesare Casadei during the summer, while there have recently been first-team opportunities for academy stars Omari Hutchinson and Lewis Hall. Chelsea are already well-stocked at centre-back with Thiago Silva, Kalidou Koulibaly, Badiashile, Trevoh Chalobah and Wesley Fofana among Potter’s viable options. 

That is unlikely to stop the Blues from putting future plans in place, however, particularly in light of Fofana’s injury-hit start to life at Stamford Bridge and 38-year-old Silva creeping towards retirement

In the past, the Blues have garnered a reputation for loaning out hoards of youngsters with only a select few making it to the first team, but Boehly has openly discussed his aim to revive the system by pursuing a multi-club ownership model. 

“The challenge Chelsea has, when you have 18, 19, 20-year-old stars, you can loan them out to clubs but you hand their development to someone else,” he said last year. “Our goal is to ensure we show pathways for our young stars to get on to the Chelsea pitch — while getting them real game time. The way to do that is through another club in a really competitive league in Europe.”

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