Chelsea get first transfer boost as ‘agreement reached’ above release clause valuation | Football | Sport

Chelsea are set to boost their transfer kitty after reaching an agreement with Aston Villa to sell Ian Maatsen, according to reports. The Blues have been widely tipped to raise funds this summer by cashing in on fringe players, with Enzo Maresca likely to oversee a major squad overhaul.

Maatsen has been heavily linked with a move away from Chelsea despite impressing on loan at Borussia Dortmund last season. The German heavyweights were reportedly eager to bring him back on a permanent basis but it seems that Villa have beaten them to the defender’s signature.

A transfer fee of just over £35million has been agreed between Chelsea and Villa following successful talks, according to The Athletic. It is said that personal terms are also in place, with Maatsen set to sign a six-year deal at Villa Park when everything is finalised at club level.

The Dutchman reportedly had a £35m release clause in his contract that was specific to Dortmund, but their failure to sign him at the end of last season meant the clause was voided. It has seen Chelsea accept a bid from Villa just above the £35m mark, which is expected to go back into the Blues’ transfer budget.

Villa boss Unai Emery is thought to be a huge admirer of Maatsen, who was a regular for Dortmund as they reached the Champions League final last season. He will be hoping to continue his strong form in the competition with Villa, who will dine at Europe’s top table after finishing fourth in the Premier League.

Maatsen started all seven of Dortmund’s games in the Champions League as well as 15 matches in the Bundesliga. He is currently representing the Netherlands at Euro 2024 but was left as an unused substitute as they beat Poland in their opening fixture.

Two seasons ago, Maatsen helped Burnley to finish top of the Championship after joining the Clarets on loan. He turned down the opportunity to return to Turf Moor on a permanent basis last summer in the hope of playing regular football at Chelsea, but he only started once in the Premier League before he was loaned to Dortmund.

Sky Sports pundit Micah Richards recently said he was surprised that Maatsen did not get much of a chance with the Blues, saying on The Rest Is Football podcast: “I want to give a shout out to Maatsen.I watched Burnley in the Championship a lot, he is on loan from Chelsea

“He is one I really thought would have a key part in what Chelsea wanted to do this season, but it didn’t transpire for him.”

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