Atletico Madrid have opened talks with Chelsea over a potential swap deal for Toby Alderweireld and Filipe Luis, reports The Mirror.
The same report had claimed earlier this week that Jose Mourinho had placed the Belgium international on his list of potential summer transfer targets.
Alderweireld spent the past season on loan with Premier League club Southampton and proved to be an excellent acquisition for Ronald Koeman.
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The Saints have the option to make the deal permanent for £7m but it is understood Atletico are thinking about activating a clause that would allow them to eliminate the agreed fee for £1.5m.
That is because they are very interested in the prospect of welcoming Luis back to the Vicente Calderon.
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Luis left for Stamford Bridge alongside Diego Costa last season but, unlike the striker, has failed to impress.
Alderweireld, comparatively, became a key player at St Mary's and helped them to achieve a club-record seventh place finish in the Premier League.
Only injury kept him from making more than 26 appearances for the club before his loan deal expired and it is understood Southampton are keen to bring him back.
Competing with Chelsea
Chelsea would be confident of coaxing Alderweireld to west London if Southampton remain their only competition, but the chance to play for the Premier League champions will mean little if he is forced to sit on the bench.
Alternatively, Alderweireld could return to Southampton where he knows he will be a key player next season. He would also at least get the chance to play some European football after the Saints secured their place in next season's Europa League.
Another big deal
But Chelsea have also forged a strong relationship with Atletico over the last year and the La Liga club have shown the strength of that bond by opening talks with the Blues themselves.
There is also the potential that the respective officials with discuss a big money deal for Atletico's star forward Antoine Griezmann.
The France international would likely cost £43.5m, the value of his release clause, but again Luis could be used as a makeweight in that deal.
Should Alderweireld join Chelsea over Southampton even if it means sitting on the bench?
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