Head coach Thomas Tuchel has revealed that Chelsea had been interested in midfielder Saul Niguez for several years. Tuchel reveals that Chelsea kept an eye on Saul for years prior to his arrival at Stamford Bridge this summer.
The 26-year-old joined Chelsea in the final minutes of the transfer deadline, signing a season-long loan from Atletico Madrid. The football transfer also involves an option for the Blues to make the deal permanent for around £30 million.
Tuchel confirmed that Saul will make his debut for the club ahead of Saturday’s match against Aston Villa.
Tuchel Reveals That Chelsea Kept an Eye on Saul for Years
Beyond the pre-match updates, the Chelsea coach further admitted that the Blues waited for Saul for years.
Also, he revealed that everyone at the Bridge is eager to see their years of scouting pay off.
“He was with us now for two weeks, he played at the highest levels and the picture is very, very clear,” Tuchel said according to The Mirror.
“The club has followed him for years. They have expertise from all the scouting reports over the years about him.
“It was a quick adaptation because of Marcos Alonso and Kepa, so this was very easy and smooth in welcoming him to the group. So, he’s in the squad and we will have to see with Jorginho tomorrow if it makes sense that we put another 90 minutes into him – because Jorginho can never say no.
“We were looking for alternatives [in midfield] – not desperately, but Saul was on the radar for Chelsea for many, many years. I’d known the player for a long time and was fighting with other clubs for the player in the past, and it was never possible.
“So, when the situation came that it was possible for a loan, we were excited about it.
“We have the chance [to make the transfer permanent] which is good, and now it’s on us and the player, and we can get to know each other in detail and see if this is a good fit. But he’s exactly the type of profile we want to give Jorginho and N’Golo [Kante] sometimes the break that they need.”