The Sun reported on Tuesday that Chelsea had knocked competition, including Everton, aside and were in front to sign Axel Witsel from Zenit this summer.
The English newspaper stated: ‘The Londoners have all but agreed terms with Witsel’s agents and now have to agree a fee with Zenit St Petersburg.
Everton thought they had sealed the deal before new Chelsea boss Antonio Conte weighed in — and midfield powerhouse Witsel is very keen on a Stamford Bridge switch.’
Witsel may well be keen on Stamford Bridge, but in Belgium it’s Everton who are still being held aloft. Despite the Chelsea claims, HLN don’t even mention the club in a round-up today of where Witsel may end up.
It’s stated that Everton are willing to pay up to €42m including bonuses, and offer Witsel personal terms which are better than that on offer in Italy.
Indeed, in both the Belgian and Russian media any references today about Chelsea are ‘according to The Sun’.
It may change, but as it stands, apart from one report it’s very much an Everton or Italy slant.