Enzo Maresca sends Chelsea scouts to Euro 2024

Enzo Maresca sends Chelsea scouts to Euro 2024

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New Chelsea manager Enzo Maresca sent club scouts to Italy’s match against Albania at Euro 2024 to watch his primary defensive target.

Maresca is a huge fan of Italy and Bologna centre-back Riccardo Calafiori, who played the whole 90 minutes for the Azzurri in their 2-1 win over Albania.

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The Chelsea scouts will have been impressed with what they saw as Calafiori was one of the best players on the pitch as he produced a towering performance alongside Alessandro Bastoni at centre back.

READ MORE: Who is Riccardo Calafiori? Bologna wonderkid wanted by Juventus & Tottenham

Calafiori boasted 100 per cent aerial duels and tackles won, 100% dribbles completed, 99 passes completed, 93% pass accuracy and three interceptions.

His only mistake in the whole game came in injury time when he misjudged a high ball, with Italy goalkeeper forced to save his blushes with a big save on Rey Manaj.

Chelsea want to sign Calafiori

Italian transfer journalist Nicolo Schira reports that Maresca is desperate to sign Calafiori but that the centre back prefers to join Juventus.

READ MORE: Euro 2024 most assists

Juventus have been in talks to sign Calafiori for several weeks. The defender has already agreed on personal terms, according to Schira, on a contract until 2029 with wages of €2.2 million a year.

The sticking point could be Bologna’s asking price of €40 million, which risks rising if Calafiori keeps performing well at Euro 2024.

Calafiori’s former club Basel will receive a 50% sell-on amount when the defender is sold.

READ MORE: Premier League summer transfers 2024: All the Done Deals

Calafiori was one of the breakout stars of the Serie A season in 2023-24, playing a key role in Bologna’s shock qualification for the Champions League.

A modern centre back, Calafiori has displayed all the qualities and attributes of a potentially top-class defender.

The 22-year-old presses and reads the game excellently. His use of the ball is superb and he is renowned for bringing the ball out of defence and joining in the construction of the play in midfield and beyond. He is aggressive and excellent in the air.

Calafiori was converted from a left back to a centre back by now former Bologna manager Thiago Motta – now the new Juventus boss.

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