As expected the suspension of Barcelona’s transfer embargo has prompted a explosion in production down at the rumour mill, with Chelsea’s Ramires understood to be a £30m target.
The Blues will be without the Brazilian, who earned the nickname ‘The Blue Kenyan’ for his supernatural work-rate back in his Cruzeiro days, through suspension as they attempt to land hefty 15/4 odds in beating Liverpool at Anfield.
If Barca sporting director Andoni Zubizaretta has his way Chelsea’s Champions League semi-final second-leg against Atletico Madrid could be Ramires’ Stamford Bridge send off, with the midfielder suspended for the rest of the domestic season.
Murmurings of wholesale changes on the Camp Nou playing staff this summer have abounded during what, by their own high standards, has been a disappointing campaign for the Catalans.
The Mirror reports Ramires to be on the Barcelona shopping list due to his work-rate and with no similarly indefatigable player on their books it’s not hard to see why.
Should Chelsea give the move the green light the red top suggests that the Blaugrana would be willing to remunerate them to the tune of £20m.
It’s a decent chunk of cash for a man that cost the west Londoners £17m from Benfica, especially given Barca are willing to throw in a young player to top up the deal.
The Spanish champions, at least for a while longer, also have a long held an interest in another member of Chelsea’s Brasileiro delegation, David Luiz.
Another former Benfica man, Spanish sports organ Mundo Deportivo suggested that Luiz was the Blaugrana’s prime candidate to replace creaking legend Carles Puyol at the club.
If the Blues are to allow one or other of the wanted men to join one of their rivals at European football’s captain’s table the centre-half is arguably the more likely.
While Ramires has made more Premier League starts than all bar four of his colleagues, Luiz has been in and out of the lineup making the XI just 15 times.