Chelsea are leading the race to sign Celtic's Kenyan midfielder Victor Wanyama, according to the Daily Express.

The player's agent, Rob Moore, has confirmed that Wanyama is open to a move to the Premier League, and new Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo is thought to view the powerful midfielder as the perfect long-term replacement for Frank Lampard.

The 20-year-old Kenyan star is wanted by a number of top-flight clubs, including Liverpool, Newcastle and newly-promoted West Ham. But the Blues are reportedly in pole position to sign the Celtic star, who joined the SPL champions from Belgian side Beerschot a year ago.

A successful first season in Scotland means Celtic are likely to command a hefty fee for Wanyama, who was bought for £900,000 last summer.

But Chelsea have already begun to rebuild for next season with the signings of Eden Hazard and Marko Marin, and Di Matteo could move for Wanyama to strengthen the defensive side of his midfield.

Wanyama's agent said: "Victor has made the club [Celtic] aware that if they receive an offer from one of the big leagues he would like them to consider it."

According to reports, the Kenyan international has also interested a number of Italian clubs, but is thought to view the Premier League as his preferred destination.

Topics:
Football
Chelsea
Premier League
Roberto Di Matteo