Chelsea have chased Kounde for a year but have now gone quiet
Barça are waiting in the wings with Xavi desperate to sign the Frenchman
It looks like there will be no bid for Jules Kounde, something that could significantly benefit Barça because the price of the operation would be reduced. Sevilla are trying to clarify Chelsea's position on the central defender and, according to the 'Daily Mail', have asked to reveal their intentions by July 5. Sevilla need to sell and know that if Barça remain the only option, they will have to lower their demands because Kounde wants to leave this summer.
Sevilla do not quite understand Chelsea's attitude. The English side have been pressing for more than a year to sign the player and, now, they have disappeared from the map. Kounde himself is somewhat surprised because he has had an agreement with the English club since last summer and, therefore, is maintaining a constant direct link with Barça to encourage them. The center-back now sees the Blaugrana as his lifeline. The reality is that Chelsea have changed their interest in the market, focusing on other targets like De Ligt, who was not on the market a year ago.
At Barça, a few weeks ago they saw it as practically impossible to sign Kounde despite the player's disposition to come. Xavi had insistently asked for him, but Sevilla were asking for €65 million and were not willing to lower even one euro with the inclusion of players, nor negotiate payment terms. Now things have changed and it is Barça that could have the upper hand. Sevilla, despite the fact that they publicly assure that they do not need to release the Frenchman, see his departure as strategic in order to revolutionise the squad.
Relations between Barça and Sevilla have always been good and this has led to various friendly transfer operations in recent years. In fact, Barça still remember the 'favour' they did to the Andalusian club by letting Ivan Rakitic leave practically for free so that he could return to the Sánchez Pizjuán. Barça understand that this is an operation to mature and that time can play in their favour. There is no rush because the player is recovering from a pubic operation and could not join until August, which is when everything should be resolved.