Chelsea lead Barcelona in race for £60m midfielder - report

  • Everton ready to sell Amadou Onana in light of club's financial crisis
  • Barcelona interested but may not have funds required to sign him
  • Chelsea ready to stump up huge fee to bring in Belgian
Amadou Onana is expected to leave Everton this summer
Amadou Onana is expected to leave Everton this summer / Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/GettyImages

Chelsea are determined to beat Barcelona to the signing of Amadou Onana and have already submitted an offer to Everton, according to reports in Spain.

22-year-old Onana has reguarly been linked with a move away from Goodison Park amid the Toffees' financial struggles and the serious threat of relegation from the Premier League.

Barcelona have been tipped as a potential landing spot for the midfielder, but Catalan outlet SPORT claim they face an uphill battle if they are to sign him this summer.

Deco, Barcelona's sporting director, is said to have identified Onana as the perfect fit for the midfield profile he wants to bring in this summer - a strong player who excels out of possession - but the club have been put off by Everton's £60m asking price.

Barcelona are therefore trying to come up with 'imaginative formulas' to sign players like Onana, but anticipate that Premier League clubs with greater financial resources will sign the Belgium international instead, with Chelsea ready to offer a huge sum - SPORT's English sources believe the cash-rich Blues have already 'presented a first offer' to Everton.

Jarrad Branthwaite, Amadou Onana
Onana and Branthwaite could both leave / Mike Hewitt/GettyImages

There could still be an auction for Onana as well as centre-back Jarrad Branthwaite, who is wanted by Manchester United. While in an ideal world Everton would fight hard to keep the duo, they accept they must sell their key assets to ease the club's financial burden.

Everton have been docked eight points so far this season for two separate breaches of the Premier League's Profit & Sustainability Rules (PSR). Their second penalty, a deduction of two points, could be reversed following an appeal.

Sean Dyche's side sit 16th in the standings, only two points above the relegation zone. Onana has been one of their standout players so far this season, making 25 appearances and scoring twice, though he was substituted for a poor performance ironically against Chelsea at half-time of a 6-0 loss on Monday.