Chelsea are reportedly stepping up their bid for Napoli star Kalidou Koulibaly.

The 25-year-old was impressive for the Serie A giants throughout last season, making 33 appearances as his team finished runners-up to Juventus.

And his exciting form apparently caught the eye of new Chelsea boss, Antonio Conte, with the Italian making the Senegal international his top priority target this summer as he is keen to overhaul his new squad following their unexpected 10th place Premier league finish last term.

The new Stamford Bridge supremo has already signed Michy Batshuayi and N’Golo Kante in deals totaling more than £65m this summer.

But his spending spree gives no sign of ending anytime soon, with the Daily Mirror claiming Chelsea are ready to launch a renewed £40million bid this week.

That figure would ultimately represent a £2m increase on the £38m offer they made last Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Napoli are under no pressure to sell following the £75million cash in for Argentine striker Gonzalo Higuain.

Chelsea’s hopes of concluding Koulibaly’s capture will be even boosted by the news Napoli manager Maurizio Sarri is lining up his replacement, though.

According to Sky Sports Italia, the Napoli boss has made a £22m bid, rising up to £25m, for Torino defender Nikola Maksimovic.

If Koulibaly joins Chelsea, it will be another example of a centre-back costing a lot of money, after Eliaquim Mangala, Nicolas Otamendi, and Eric Bailly all arrived in England for big fees.

The Napoli centre-back has developed a lot over the last 12 months and many believe he could become one of the best in Europe. If he joins and works with Antonio Conte, that will only be beneficial to his game.

Along with Kurt Zouma, he could be the long-term future of both the Chelsea and France defence.

He has been a consistent part of the Napoli defence since joining from Genk in 2014 and at the age of 25, has yet to reach his peak.


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