Chelsea have perfect workaround strategy to finally land £150m long-term target

Chelsea owner Todd Boehly is again enjoying a productive summer transfer window (Image: GETTY)

Chelsea could finally land long-term target Rafael Leao due to a clause in his AC Milan contract. The Blues have been chasing the rapid winger for the last two years and could attempt to thrash out a deal before the middle of July.

Chelsea have made a whole host of signings since American Todd Boehly bought the club from Roman Abramovich at the end of May 2022.

And they have already enjoyed a productive summer, with the club securing the services of Tosin Adarabioyo, Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall, Marc Guiu, Estevao Willian.

Leao penned a contract extension last June to commit to Milan until the summer of 2028.

But, according to Footmercato, it includes a £148million release clause that can only be triggered during a 10-day period each year between July 5 and July 15. Chelsea could therefore get a deal done, without Milan having any say.

Like many clubs in the Premier League, Chelsea are under pressure to continually balance their books to ensure they don’t fall foul of profit and sustainability rules (PSR). But their pursuit of Leao could be boosted by the fact his release clause can be paid in multiple instalments.

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That means the west Londoners could potentially have a PSR workaround if they are able to split the transfer fee over a number of accounting periods.

And Chelsea may be able to reduce the transfer fee they pay Milan for the 25-year-old if the Italians are willing to accept a part-exchange deal from the Blues.

Chelsea duo Romelu Lukaku and Carney Chukwuemeka have both been linked with a move to Milan, with the San Siro club reportedly enquiring about the Belgium international this summer.

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Chelsea could finally land long-term target Rafael Leao due to a clause in his AC Milan contract (Image: GETTY)

The relationship between the two clubs is thought to be strong, with the Serie A team securing Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Olivier Giroud, Christian Pulisic and Fikayo Tomori from Chelsea in recent years.

And if Milan are willing to include Lukaku and Chukwuemeka in a deal for Leao, Chelsea could make handsome savings.

Leao, who has helped Portugal reach the Euro 2024 quarter-finals, was quizzed about his future by Corriere della Sera earlier this year.

And the star explained: “Milan helped me when I was in a very difficult situation and they supported me. I won’t forget. I am loyal. I was a kid when I arrived and I’ve grown up as a man and as a footballer. I want to win again, my head is here.”