Chelsea plot move for £6m Man United target as Cole replacement

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Chelsea are plotting a summer move for Valencia defender Juan Bernat, according to The Metro.

Reports suggest that such a move could be as a replacement for left-back Ashley Cole, with the Blues willing to listen to offers for him at the end of the current campaign.

33-year-old Cole - who played 45 minutes of England's 1-0 friendly win over Denmark on Wednesday night but is expected to miss Chelsea's clash with Tottenham in the Premier League later today through injury - has been out of favour in recent times at Stamford Bridge, with Jose Mourinho often preferring to start right-back Cesar Azpilicueta instead.

Such a move appears to have cast considerable doubt over Cole's long-term future at Chelsea.

£6 million-rated Bernat, meanwhile, has been a steady influence for Valencia this season. A successful product of the club's youth and academy system, the Spanish U21 international has admirably coped with making the transition from full-back to winger.

However, if Chelsea do indeed hope to land Bernat then they look likely to face competition from Premier League rivals Manchester United.

David Moyes' side - who have struggled so badly this season and currently find themselves well adrift of even the race for fourth place - were linked with the player only yesterday, with reports suggesting the 21-year-old starlet had been added to the club's list of transfer targets.

If Manchester United and Chelsea were to do battle over Bernat, it will be intriguing to see just who will come out on top.

While Manchester United remain unquestionably superior to their London counterparts in terms of pure reputation, if they are not able to quickly remedy their issues with form then it is highly unlikely that they will be in a position to offer Champions League football.

Chelsea, meanwhile, currently top the Premier League and will - barring an uncharacteristic and frankly catastrophic late collapse - almost certainly book their place once again in - something that could surely give them an edge in any negotiations.

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