As per a report from the Evening Standard, Chelsea are unlikely to bring Nathan Ake back to the club this month.
24-year-old stopper Ake came up through the youth ranks at Stamford Bridge, before breaking into the first-team setup of the Blues for the first time as a raw teen in 2012.
The years that followed resulted in the Dutchman being sent out on a series of loan spells, the last of which saw Ake join Bournemouth on a season-long deal in the summer of 2016.
The youngster’s impressive displays over the opening half of the campaign eventually resulted in Chelsea opting to recall Ake the following winter, but, after Bournemouth tabled a club-record £20 million bid to bring the defender back to the Vitality in the summer of 2017, those in charge at Stamford Bridge came to the decision that it was time to part with their youth product.
The seasons since, though, have seen Ake go on to establish himself as one of the Premier League’s most highly-regarded stoppers.
The 13-time capped Dutch international featured in every one of Bournemouth’s 76 league fixtures over the last two campaigns, proving a rock at the back for Eddie Howe’s men.
Chelsea ‘unlikely’ to swoop
As such, links between Ake and some of English football’s heavyweights have inevitably begun to circulate in the media.
Chief among these clubs, meanwhile, have been the 24-year-old’s former side, Chelsea.
The Blues have long been rumoured to hold a buyback option on Ake, worth £40 million.
As a result, on the back of Chelsea’s transfer ban being lifted, speculation inevitably reemerged that the capital giants were ready to swoop for their former stopper this month.
As per the aforementioned update from the reliable James Olley of the Evening Standard, though, this looks unlikely to be the case.
Chelsea boss Frank Lampard is said to have had Ake ‘extensively scouted’ since the beginning of the season.
However, as per Olley’s report:
‘Standard Sport understands those reports have raised concerns about Ake’s suitability for the Blues with Lampard harbouring doubts over whether he is the right fit for the higher defensive line he prefers to play with.’
As such, though the possibility of Chelsea activating their clause on the Dutchman cannot be definitively ruled out, as things stand, such a move appears ‘unlikely’.
From this morning. Understand Chelsea unlikely to pursue Ake deal. https://t.co/1KZVMpLU68
— James Olley (@JamesOlley) January 14, 2020