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Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Jules Kounde speaks out on future after Chelsea’s failed £47m transfer bid

  Jules Kounde says he is fully ‘focused’ on enjoying a successful season at Sevilla after a ‘hectic’ summer transfer window in which he...


Jules Kounde says he is fully ‘focused’ on enjoying a successful season at Sevilla after a ‘hectic’ summer transfer window in which he was heavily linked with Chelsea .

Chelsea identified Kounde as their primary defensive target and lodged an ambitious offer of £47million for the sought-after 22-year-old, widely regarded as one of the finest young centre-backs in European football. But the Blues were ultimately priced out of a deal, with Sevilla demanding in excess of £60m for Kounde, and the France international was reportedly left ‘furious’ with the La Liga outfit for blocking his path to Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea went on to strengthen in attack and in midfield with the addition of Saul Niguez and Romelu Lukaku, but the Champions League winners remain intent on bolstering their defensive options and could revive their move for Kounde’s signature in January.

However, it appears Kounde is happy at Sevilla and keen to put the speculation behind him, with the club sitting third in the Spanish top flight after a strong start to the campaign.

‘We all know the summer has been hectic, I wouldn’t say complicated. But that’s the past now,’ Kounde said at a press conference on Tuesday. ‘I am focused on the team. The most important performance is on the pitch. ‘The team needs me and I need the team too to give my best and that’s what I’m trying to do.

‘So far I’m happy with the results of the team and my personal performances, although I can still improve and have a better season than the previous one.’

Sevilla were held to a 1-1 draw at home to RB Salzburg in their opening Champions League match this season and Kounde is hoping for an improved performance away to Group G rivals Wolfsburg this evening.

‘I don’t know if this is the most difficult team in the group. It does not concern us. We’ll see tomorrow,’ he added. ‘We basically have to focus on ourselves and play our game. ‘Our first game was difficult and we made mistakes, but that’s the past. ‘We have to focus on our next game which will also be a key game like any other in the Champions League. It is the most demanding competition. We have long forgotten this first game.’

Speaking to AS earlier this week, Kounde’s centre- back partner, Diego Carlos, insisted the Frenchman was ‘very happy’ to still be a Sevilla player. Asked whether Kounde had already forgotten about Chelsea’s interest, Diego Carlos told AS: ‘Sure. Jules already had his head in Sevilla when he returned to play here. ‘We are always aware of him and he is very happy here.’

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