According to reports from Sam Wallace in the Independent, Chelsea have agreed a deal for Slovenian centre-back Emir Dautovic to join Michael Emenalo’s youth revolution at Stamford Bridge.
The Blues are believed to have struck a €1.3m deal with NK Maribor for the 17 year-old defender, who they have been tracking for some time and are now set to bring to London.
Back in 2010, stories emerged from Slovenia claiming that the two clubs had struck something of an accord with the future European Champions keen to get an early look at youngsters emerging from what has grown to be a prolific academy.
Defender Luka Kranjc was heavily linked before eventually moving to Genoa in Italy, but at the second time of asking Chelsea look to have got their man (or, if you rather, boy). Dautovic is a tall, technically gifted centre-back who uses every inch of his ample frame to his advantage in the air and in the tackle.
Of course, he’s unlikely to go straight into Roberto Di Matteo’s plans in the first team squad and you can therefore expect to see him playing for Dermot Drummy’s new Under-21 team. With Rohan Ince and Tomas Kalas out on loan and Daniel Pappoe still in the later stages of rehabilitation from a serious knee injury, Drummy’s team lacks numbers in the short-term at the position with only Nathaniel Chalobah, Nathan Aké and Alex Davey of notable experience, although all of them are only 17 themselves.
Dautovic joins a slew of new young faces believed to have either joined or be on their way to Chelsea this summer, following the moves of the Musonda brothers, Andreas Christensen, and Thorgan Hazard.