AC Milan director Paolo Maldini has confirmed I Rossoneri are close to striking a deal to sign Chelsea centre-back Fikayo Tomori.
Milan are keen to add a new defender this month and had targeted Strasbourg’s Mohamed Simakan, but a combination of injury concerns and links to RB Leipzig saw the Italian side move away from Simakan and towards Tomori.
Talks between the two sides have been underway for a few days, and Maldini recently revealed that things are close to being done.
“It’s very close, but in this market, things can fall apart because of one missing detail,” he told Sky Sport Italia. “It is a dynamic market, but it is normal that we follow Tomori. We tried to sign him last summer as well because we saw some features in him that we think is perfect to complete our defensive department.”
Despite Maldini’s caution, there isn’t thought to be too much standing in the way of this one being finished.
It’s been suggested that the deal could fall apart at the last minute because of Milan’s determination to insert an option to sign Tomori for around £25m, something manager Frank Lampard appears to be against.
The boss recently insisted (via the Daily Mail) that he still had a ‘long-term plan’ for Tomori, and he later went on to insist that Chelsea are simply focused on doing what is best for the 23-year-old’s career.
“I don’t think there’s any ‘when did it start to go wrong’, Fikayo’s a developing player. As a squad, we had four centre-backs last year, and you can’t play four in one game,” Lampard said (via Goal).
“And you try to find consistency at different times. At one point Fikayo was in that, and then later on not so much. And this year we have five centre-backs, so the predicament is difficult for centre-backs who are not playing regularly.
“And that’s why he may go out on loan for his development, he’s a young player and he’s had a huge rise in the last two or so seasons since I’ve been working with him, and that will continue, and we’ll find the best path for that.”