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Chelsea transfer news: Blues enter Benteke race
3rd July 2013 5:07pm BST
Tottenham Hotspur fear they will be gazumped by London rivals Chelsea in their bid for Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke.
Spurs have reportedly opened talks with Villa over a possible move for the big Belgian – who bagged 19 goals in the Premier League last season.
But SportsDirect News has learned the Blues have identified Benteke as a possible alternative to Napoli forward Edinson Cavani.
Boss Jose Mourinho tabled a concrete offer for the Uruguay hitman on Tuesday, though French giants Paris Saint-Germain also made a megabucks bid for the star.
However, both offers fell below Cavani’s £54m release fee, and the Italian club have insisted he will not be sold unless the clause is triggered.
And that has seen Mourinho explore other options.
He is desperate to land a marquee striker this summer, and is also monitoring Wayne Rooney’s situation at Manchester United.
But Benteke is seen as a cut-price fall-back option.
Villa would demand at least £25m for their prized asset, and Mourinho would be willing to match their asking price – given his relatively inexpensive wages.
The star earns £20,000-a-week at Villa Park - £230,000-a-week less than Rooney does at United – and Chelsea would have no problem in tripling his wages at the Bridge.
And the lure of Champions League football could see Benteke snub Spurs for the Blues if both clubs table bids – though Tottenham also hold an interest in Valencia striker Roberto Soldado, and are close to sealing a deal for Barcelona star David Villa.