Chelsea completes signing of Monaco’s Bakayoko
Chelsea has its second major signing of the summer, and this is the one many fans have been waiting for.
The Blues announced the capture of Monaco midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko, who arrives on a five-year contract through the summer of 2022. Chelsea did not announce the transfer fee paid to Monaco, but reports say Bakayoko cost around $56 million.
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Bakayoko arrived at Monaco in the summer of 2014 from Stade Rennais where he had climbed through the youth ranks. He established himself as an immediate starter, and despite an injury-plagued first two years at Monaco, the young midfielder eventually became a top transfer target in Europe. Last season, he made 32 Ligue 1 starts as Monaco went on to win the French title. He also made 11 Champions League appearances as Monaco reached the semifinals.
The 19-year-old will partner with fellow Frenchman N’Golo Kante in a fearsome midfield pairing that will allow Chelsea to protect its back-three and allow the wingers to press higher.
Bakayoko becomes the fourth player 22 years old or younger to leave Monaco this summer. Bernardo Silva left for Manchester City, while defender Abdou Diallo made his way to German club Mainz and 21-year-old striker Corentin Jean moved to Toulouse. There could be others to leave as well, as the future of 18-year-old superstar Kylian Mbappe has not yet been sorted, and 21-year-old Thomas Lemar is a wanted man among the European elite.