Raheem Sterling has flown to Los Angeles to connect with his upcoming new Chelsea team-mates pending official confirmation of his move from Man City.
Sterling is about to join the Blues in a deal worth £47.5million, rising to £50million and has undergone medical treatment.
If his transfer goes through in the coming days, Sterling could make his Chelsea debut in Charlotte next Thursday or against Arsenal in the Florida Cup final on Saturday.
Raheem Sterling has flown to Los Angeles to meet his upcoming Chelsea teammates
Sterling joins Blues squad pending official confirmation of his move from City
However, it is considered unlikely that the attacker will be available this Sunday for Chelsea’s pre-season friendly with Club America.
The Blues made it clear they wanted Sterling to play a key role in their attacking overhaul and, after positive talks with Tuchel, Sterling chose Stamford Bridge.
Sterling is said to have negotiated a five-year contract worth significantly more than his existing £300,000 a week. There is an option for a season extension on a deal that puts him in the top three earners in the Premier League.
Chelsea have also opened talks about a transfer for Kalidou Koulibaly.
Sterling will be teaming up with Thomas Tuchel and his Blues squad for the next 24 hours
Tuchel’s men are currently at Drake Stadium UCLA Campus, preparing for their tour of the US
Chelsea prepare for an exhibition game against Club America on Sunday
It is reported that new owner Todd Boehly spoke with the Napoli defender’s agent on Monday about what is likely to be a deal worth around £35million.
Reports in France revealed what Koulibaly said about his potential move to Chelsea: “I’ll confirm that later, but it’s on the right track.”
The 31-year-old would give a welcome boost if the club look to bolster their backline, with a dive for Manchester City’s Nathan Ake not yet over the line.
Ake is about to arrive after agreeing personal terms for a return to his former club. City wants about 40 million pounds for the Dutchman.
This summer, Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen have already seen free transfers to Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively, meaning the club are looking to bring in at least two centre-backs.
Sterling will join Chelsea in a deal worth £47.5million rising to £50million and has undergone medical treatment
Captain Cesar Azpilicueta, who will join Barcelona on a £7million transfer, has been told he cannot leave Stamford Bridge until reinforcements have been signed.
Tuchel’s side also looks to Bayern Munich winger Serge Gnabry and in defence, PSG’s Presnel Kimpembe, Sevilla’s Jules Kounde, RB Leipzig’s Josko Gvardiol and Juventus’ Matthijs de Ligt. De Ligt prefers a switch to Bayern Munich.
Koulibaly has long been linked with a move to the Premier League after impressing in Serie A and on the European podium and Thomas Tuchel’s side look set to be in pole position to sign this summer.
The 31-year-old has just one year left on his contract in Naples, meaning the Italian giants are now eager to cash in on him to avoid risking losing him for nothing next summer.
A move to West London would reunite him with Senegal’s international teammate, Edouard Mendy.
Chelsea’s hunt for Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly has been stepped up with £34m deal closer
The goalkeeper spoke of the need to bond with incoming arrivals as they try to close the gap on Manchester City and Liverpool.
He said, ‘You always have to be willing to adapt. You have to be ready to change the connection with the players, the position, the formation. So it’s something new for us to deal with, but we’re more than happy with the defenders coming.”
Mendy also believes that last season’s gap – 19 points to champions City and 18 to number two Liverpool – is not as big as some may think.
“If you think about the past year, I think we were close until December when we had a lot of things against us, like injuries,” he said from Chelsea’s preparatory camp in California.
“We had Covid cases and it was like we lost our performance level a little bit, and yes, I think that’s the difference.
“But if you watch last year’s match against Liverpool and Man City, I don’t think you can see a big gap between us and them. So we just have to get off to a good start and maintain our performance level and see what happens.’
Tuchel (left) has money to spend this summer after acquiring Todd Boehly (right)
Chelsea have money to spend after the £4.25bn takeover by American billionaire Todd Boehly, but they have yet to sign their first signature before the summer transfer window.
It is believed that Boehly will fly with Sterling to Los Angeles on Tuesday, where Tuchel and his players are currently at training camp.
Chelsea will face Mexican giants Club America in Las Vegas, Charlotte FC in North Carolina and London rivals Arsenal in Orlando across the Atlantic.
Boehly’s Blues has also been linked to Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo after he stunned the Red Devils by expressing his desire to leave.