Chelsea are reportedly ready to let January signing Kevin de Bruyne move to Premier League new boys Southampton.
The Sun claims that the former Racing Genk winger will be allowed to spend next season on loan with Nigel Adkins’ Saints, as the Stamford Bridge club want him to continue his development elsewhere for a year.
Blues owner Roman Abramovich sanctioned the singing of the 20-year-old in the mid-season transfer window, paying his club a fee of around £7million and agreeing a five-and-a-half-year contract.
He was immediately loaned back to Genk for the remainder of the season, but the report claims Southampton beat the Belgian club in the race to take him on next year.
Chelsea have already secured the £32milllion signing of De Bruyne’s compatriot and international teammate Eden Hazard, as well as young German midfielder Marko Marin, and so was not expected to feature regularly for the Blues if he stayed to fight for his place.