After Champions League final, Mauricio Pochettino’s Chelsea transfer mission becomes clearer

Andre Onana’s journey has not been simple. In actuality, far from it.

Onana was suspended for a year in 2021 for doping after accidentally taking his wife’s medication. At the time, Onana was working for Ajax, who had hoped for a shorter suspension for their goalie. That was not the case, however UEFA acknowledged that the goalie had not attempted to break the regulations. Instead, they took a stern stance in the issue. In 2022, Onana moved to Inter Milan for free, and the Cameroonian hasn’t looked back since.

Onana came incredibly close to reaching the very top of football on Saturday night, but his valiant Inter team lost 1-0 to clear favorites Manchester City. However, it would have been much more cozy for Pep Guardiola’s team if it weren’t for Onana.

If ever there was a need, the 90 minutes in Turkey served as a reminder of why the 27-year-old is currently one of the most sought-after goalkeepers in European football. Although he is a master at stopping shots, he stands out more than most players in his position for his work on the ball.

Onana was at ease carrying the ball out and searching for the dangerous pass that would finally see his Inter side get on the offensive despite Man City’s aggressive and unrelenting pressing. Allowing the goalie to do this is a risky strategy, but it can be quite useful when they are as strong in possession as the Cameroon international.

Ederson, who plays for Man City, is likely the finest at doing this, but Onana undoubtedly demonstrated on Saturday night how valuable he can be. Chelsea wants and obviously needs it.

Kepa Arrizabalaga and Edouard Mendy are the current options for the Blues, and neither goalkeeper has done anything to distinguish himself as the No. 1 in that position. Following Mendy’s rocky start to the season in 2022/23, Kepa played the most of the season just ended. While occasionally excelling, the Spaniard still didn’t do enough to firmly establish his supremacy, which is why Chelsea is looking for a new goalkeeper.

One of those being evaluated by the club is Onana. Since the Cameroonian was at Ajax and Roman Abramovich owned Stamford Bridge, Chelsea has been keeping an eye on him. Inter are hesitant to sell Onana, and from all reports, he appears to be content there.

“I am ecstatic to be at Inter. You never know what can happen at this elite level, Onana stated following the Champions League final. “I’m open for Inter, and I’ll accept whatever they decide. I enjoy being at Inter.”

His representative recently made similar remarks. The goalkeeper’s agent, Albert Botines, told TV Play in Italy that transfer market rumors are common at this point, but he preferred not to discuss them because it was still very early and the player was still entirely focused on the field. “Inter and I are bound by a five-year contract. He still has four more years left on his contract, and right now all of his attention is on the Serie A and Champions League finals.

“Don’t worry, he still has a long contract. He is playing for Italy’s top squad, which makes him very happy.

Additionally, David Raya and Mike Maignan are being considered, though a transfer for the latter is thought to be difficult to arrange with AC Milan. When Mauricio Pochettino takes over as manager at the beginning of the following month, finding a new goalkeeper—someone who can be referred to be Chelsea’s No. 1—will undoubtedly be at the top of his long list of to-do items.

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