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Romeo Lavia, Khephren Thuram & the five midfielders Chelsea could target as an alternative to £100m Moises Caicedo



Brighton are refusing to budge on their nine-figure valuation of the Ecuador dynamo, so the Blues may need to look elsewhereChelsea have a significant decision to make in the final month of the transfer window; with a gaping void in their midfield following the departures of N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic, among others, they must choose whether or not to cough up £100 million ($128.5m) for Moises Caicedo or, finally, concede defeat in the pursuit of their primary target for another window.

The Blues’ latest offer of £80m ($102.5m) was immediately knocked back by Brighton, who have remained firm on their valuation since the outset in negotiations and will command at least £20m more for the outstanding 21-year-old.

If Chelsea are unwilling to stretch that little bit further, the quandary facing them is whether the alternative options would elevate the midfield to anything like the same extent as Caicedo, who seems destined to become a top-level No.6.Nevertheless, here are the defensive midfielders Chelsea could turn to if Brighton’s dynamo drifts out of their reach…