Chelsea have been placed on red alert after Manchester United seemingly ended their interest in signing Alvaro Morata.
The Red Devils looked to be in prime position for the Real Madrid frontman having chased him all summer.
However, instead they have agreed a £75million deal to bring Romelu Lukaku to Old Trafford.
The Belgian had been Blues boss Antonio Conte’s No1 objective – but now it looks like both the Premier League giants have swapped targets.
Madrid are believed to have told United chiefs that they are no longer willing to discuss the sale of the 24-year-old to them.
And that has opened the door for the champions, who had previously been interested in Morata.
The Italian coach had wanted to bring the former Chelsea youth product back to Stamford Bridge but the latest news from Old Trafford has forced him to look elsewhere.
That leaves him in a tricky situation – especially because of Diego Costa’s impending departure following the pair’s row.
Alvaro Morata factfile: the complete modern striker
- Alvaro Morata, aged 24, was born in Madrid, Spain, in October 1992.
- He spent two years at Atletico Madrid’s academy before moving on to Getafe and then Real in 2008, still a junior player.
- Morata made his debut for Real in August 2010, scoring against Castilla.
- He joined Juventus in July 2014 for £17.5million but Real retained an option to buy him back.
- After scoring 27 goals in 93 games in Italy, Real bought Morata back for £26million in 2016.
- Last season he managed 20 goals for Real, his best return.
- He made his international debut for Spain in 2014 and has nine goals from 20 games.
- Morata is a complete modern striker, who is strong on the ball, has energy and pace, and at 6ft 2in is also lethal in the air.
Atletico Madrid, the only club Costa wants to go to, and attempting to negotiate a way around their current transfer ban to bring him back to La Liga.
Meanwhile, Jose Mourinho is hoping to wrap-up the move for Lukaku before his United squad fly to the USA for their pre-season tour on Sunday.
Wayne Rooney looks unlikely to be on that flight as he nears a return to Goodison Park.
Both deals are being treated separately by the Toffees and Red Devils.
Mino Raiola, Lukaku’s agent, has also brokered similar deals to take Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and the world record signing Paul Pogba to Manchester.