Manolas

Chelsea are set to launch a fresh bid for Arsenal target Kostas Manolas.

Manolas has been linked with Arsenal since last summer but over recent weeks their name has fallen away, allowing Chelsea’s to take prominence.

Last summer Arsenal were quoted a price of €40m for the defender and that price has increased over the course of the year to £38m.

But Roma now seems to have little interest in selling the Greece international.

Antonio Conte is a keen sign a new defender and has also been linked with Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly.

Manolas, who replaced Medhi Benatia at the Stadio Olimpico after joining from Olympiacos last season, impressed with a series of confident performances in defence for Luciano Spalletti’s men both domestically and in the Champions League.

According to TuttoMercatoWeb, Chelsea ready to table an attractive offer to Roma for Manolas.

But the Serie A giants are unlikely to accept a bid because they have to pay 50 per cent of any fee received by Manolas’ former club Olympiakos if a deal is struck before August 31.

It’s claimed Conte would like the 24-year-old on board before the end of the transfer window but may be forced to wait until January at the earliest.

Meanwhile, Roma president James Palotta has questioned why Manolas would want an exit this summer.

“Why on earth should Manolas leave? Juan Jesus and Nacho are two experienced defenders who are going to help us,” Palotta said.

“The team is working very hard for the Champions League play-off stage.”

Arsenal have also been linked with Manolas, but TuttoMercatoWeb previously reported that Manolas himself favours a move to Stamford Bridge.

He is under contract until 2019 but talks over a new deal have stalled.

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