Having pocketed a tidy £60 million after Oscar’s move to China, Antonio Conte is on the lookout for a replacement at Chelsea.
While the Blues are in stunning form and appear to have found a winning formula, their midfield options are ‘thin’ – for want of a better word – and in need of bolstering.
Previous reports suggested Conte wanted Real Madrid’s James Rodriguez, who was said to be available for around £75 million.
However, any potential move for the Colombian has since been ruled out.
The January transfer window is now just around the corner and according to The Sun, Conte has taken steps towards signing Oscar’s successor.
They claim that, on Boxing Day, Chelsea’s manager met with Arturo Vidal and his representatives to discuss a potential move from Bayern Munich.
Conte is reportedly preparing a £34 million offer, though Bayern are holding out for somewhere closer to the £40 million mark.
What works in Conte’s favour is the fact he and Vidal have previously worked together at Juventus, where the Chilean developed into a world-class midfielder.
Furthermore, Vidal once explained how he would “go to war” with his former manager.
Speaking in March, he said: “If I go to war I would take Conte with me – we will see what happens.”
And in response to Vidal’s claim, Conte said: “Arturo Vidal said he’d take me to war with him? I’d take Vidal too.
“He’s an amazing player. I must admit at Juve, I found him hard to fit in.
“In my head, I wanted to play a 4-2-4 and 4-4-2, but seeing the intensity of Vidal getting up and down the pitch, I switched to 4-3-3 which then transformed into 3-5-2.
“He has extraordinary physical and technical attributes, if I get to coach him a little more it’d be fantastic. I want him on all my teams.”
Conte was also interested in signing Roma’s Radja Nainggolan, but the Belgian’s £51.5 million valuation proved a sticking point in negotiations.