Chelsea sign French midfielder Bakayoko from Monaco


CHELSEA have confirmed the signing of Tiemoue Bakayoko from Monaco.

English football champions Chelsea have boosted their midfield as they signed young France midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko from Monaco on Saturday in a five-year contract.

"I am very happy to be here and to join this great team", boyhood Blues fan Bakayoko, who will inherit the number 14 shirt vacated by Bertrand Traore in west London, told Chelsea's official website.

The 22-year-old subsequently watched Chelsea run riot in an 8-2 friendly win over Fulham at their Cobham training ground and he thanked Batshuayi - who scored twice in the rout - for his impact on the transfer. "I think he will stay, it looks like that, for one more season".

He was also part of the Monaco squad that reached the Champions League semi-finals last season, going out of the competition to Juventus.

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Bakayoko may have to wait until September to make his debut after undergoing a knee surgery in the off-season. It makes the French global the most expensive midfielder in Chelsea history, surpassing the previous record held by £32m N'Golo Kante.

He could become the Blues' third summer signing following the arrival of centre-back Antonio Rudiger from Roma and veteran goalkeeper Willy Caballero, on a free transfer, from Manchester City.

For weeks now, Nemanja Matic has been ear marked as one of a few midfielders followed by Manchester United.

Morata would replace fellow Spanish global Diego Costa, whom Conte told at the end of last season that he no longer figured in the manager's plans despite his 20 Premier League goals spurring on Chelsea to the title.

Chelsea hope Bakayoko will complete his medical and get the all clear to sign before they go on pre-season tour to China and Singapore on Monday, but the 22-year-old's fitness remains a concern.