Chelsea are considering a summer bid for Nottingham Forest goalkeeper Karl Darlow as they seek more home-grown players, reports the Sunday Mirror.
Jose Mourinho has sent his network of scouts across England in order to find as many as four homegrown players good enough to make it at Stamford Bridge. Darlow is thought to be the first to be added to the list ahead of a busy summer transfer window.
Darlow has been in sensational form for Forest this season, starting all 39 of their league games despite a turbulent time off the pitch. His fine form has caught the attention of both Liverpool and Tottenham, but now Chelsea are ready to swoop in.
Chelsea will wait to see if Nottingham Forest win promotion to the Premier League before making an offer but hope he can come in as an understudy to Petr Cech for next season.
For on-loan goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, Darlow's arrival will mean another season away from Stamford Bridge. Courtois has been on loan to Atletico Madrid in each of his last three seasons as a Chelsea player but will not succeed Cech next season.
Courtois has only two years to run on his Chelsea contract and officials at Stamford Bridge will try to tie him down to another long-term contract before allowing him to leave for another season.
Darlow would have a difficult decision to make if Chelsea come calling. He would get the chance to play for a top four club in the Premier League but will be a firm No.2 behind the long-standing Cech in the Chelsea ranks.
However, Chelsea are desperate to sign for homegrown talent to meet with Premier League regulations and will likely offer Darlow a substantial pay rise to warm the Blues' bench next season.