Chelsea now face Manchester United battle in race for Portuguese midfielder

Manchester United join Chelsea in the race for the signing of Fulham’s Joao Palhinha

Chelsea have indicated an interest in signing Joao Palhinha, although the club would face competition from Manchester United and Liverpool.

Records, (h/t Express), claim that United, Liverpool, and Chelsea are looking to sign and may make a move during the summer transfer window. Palhinha has been exceptional this season as Fulham aims to qualify for European competition. However, the former Sporting CP player has been tied down to a long-term contract (Transfermarkt).

The midfielder has drawn interest from several Premier League teams as a result of his performances with the Cottagers and he may soon sign with a major club. The 27-year-old has remained a regular starter at Fulham having appeared in 24 Premier League games recording three goals.

Chelse are interested in signing  Palhinha in summer window (Credit-BBC).
Chelse are interested in signing Palhinha in summer window (Credit-BBC).

However, Fulham may find it challenging to retain the 27-year-old player for the upcoming campaign. Meanwhile, Chelsea should be looking to sign a defensive midfielder as the club has looked shaky from the centre of the pitch.

Injury to midfielders N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic and the departure of Jorginho has left Chelsea with no regular midfielders in that position for an extended period of time.

Nonetheless, the addition of Enzo Fernandez has helped re-establish some balance in the middle, but the Argentina international will also need time to adjust. He is a youngster, after all. Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Conor Gallagher, meanwhile, haven’t shown anything to warrant regular starts, while Carney Chukwuemeka is still too inexperienced.

Palhinha might be a good option since he is thriving in the Premier League and could improve our defensive midfield. He is 27 years old, which indicates that he has plenty of experience and isn’t too old. Just the level of experience we need around a number of youngsters in this team.

Former Sporting CP player Joao Palhinha. (Credit-Sky sports)
Former Sporting CP player Joao Palhinha. (Credit-Sky sports)

He is a shrewd ball-winning midfielder, who can lay a strong base in our midfield to let the attackers go up and do serious damage. He possesses excellent attributes as he never backs down from a challenge and is a fierce defender, frequently going into tackles to try to stop rival attacks.

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He would also have acclimatised to London with Fulham and could be ready to take the next big step in his career. When Chelsea come calling, it can be hard for players to resist. Fulham and the Blues are neck-and-neck in the Premier League table this season but given our quality of players and investment in the team, we will surely return to the pinnacle very soon.

It’s up to Palhinha to decide if he wants to join our project or not, if the Blues retain their interest in him until the summer. Manchester United, on the other hand, may not have too many openings in their midfield to offer Palhinha the same chances as we can, given the presence of Christian Eriksen, Fred, Scott McTominay and Casemiro.