Sporting Club de Portugal president Frederico Varandas was in London on Tuesday alongside other officials and the vice president for finance to meet with Chelsea and Barcelona over Rafael Leao.

That’s according to A Bola, who say that the AC Milan forward was the ‘subject on the table’ when Varandas and co sat to meet with Chelsea’s hierarchy.

The Londoners are interested in the Portuguese forward and have been since last summer. They want to understand the ‘contours’ of the dispute between Leao and Sporting, his former club.

They’re still owed €16.5m, plus another €3.8m in compensation following the unilateral termination of the player’s contract after the invasion of Sporting’s academy in 2018.

Leao is currently renewing his contract with Milan, where his current deal runs until 2024, but Chelsea believe they can sign him and have shown an openness to solving the financial dispute with Sporting as part of that deal.

Indeed, the belief is that Chelsea would be willing to give Sporting priority on the list of players that the Blues need to get rid of this summer.

At the moment the problem between Sporting and Rafa Leao is far from being solved despite there having been negotiations for some time.

However, the player has put pressure on Milan to pay off the debts owed to Sporting and Lille, the French club being the one he joined immediately after ending his contract in Portugal.

He’s expressed a willingness to pay part of the percentage as he is jointly responsible for the issue but the talks have gone backwards in recent months as Sporting want to receive €45m, the value of his clause at the time.

Both clubs have lodged appeals with the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland but Chelsea’s willingness to pay could solve the issue completely, hence the meeting with Varandas and his team this week.