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Chelsea have reportedly won the race to sign Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes. Magalhaes impressed against Frank Lampard’s side during the group stages of this season’s Champions League.
The Brazilian, who is considered as next Virgil van Dijk, is valued at around £30million by the Ligue 1 club. Lampard has struggled to settle on a regular combination at the centre of his defence. According to Eurosport a deal for 22-year-old Gabriel is almost complete.
The player has only 34 appearances in the Ligue 1 and six appearances in the Champions League so far.
He joined Lille from Brazilian second division club Avai in January 2017. But he was sent out on loan spells at Troyes and Dinamo Zagreb. Lille decided to keep the young centre-back at the club for the 2018/19 campaign.
The Brazilian isn’t so quick but he controls space well and that allows him to handle even the most clever of wingers. His 11.98 ball recoveries per 90 are only bettered by 12 other Ligue 1 defenders. He is completing an average of 49.23 passes per 90 in Ligue 1 this season and these are not simply safe passes as 42.8 per cent going forward.
He can hit crossfield balls or passes over a defence with perfect accuracy, which is why he has completed 46.7 per cent of long passes this term.
So how could Chelsea line-up with the player on their books?