Chelsea have emerged as admirers of the Uruguay international since the end of the Premier League season as they try to reinforce in the centre of the pitch.
The club’s recruitment squad appears to have picked Ugarte as the right partner for Enzo Fernandez and are willing to meet his £52 million release clause.
PSG, on the other hand, has always remained in the background as the French giants employ a different transfer strategy and sign younger players.
With Ugarte being 22 years old and having played for Sporting, signing him has become a top priority at a time when the likes of Sergio Ramos and Lionel Messi will be leaving the club.
Although Christophe Galtier is scheduled to leave as head coach, sporting advisor Luis Campos remains a crucial factor in completing moves, which appears to be important in this case.
PSG leading the race to sign Manuel Ugarte
According to Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano, PSG has decided to significantly boost their contract offer to Ugarte, causing Chelsea to withdraw from the contest.
According to Romano, Ugarte was interested in a move to Chelsea until the Blues reportedly dropped their offer due to PSG’s refusal to pay what Chelsea considers to be “above the market rate.”
According to the Record, PSG is willing to pay Ugarte €10 million (£8.62 million) per year, more than twice what Chelsea is said to be willing to spend.
The news comes as another source claims that Chelsea’s owners, Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital, are willing to buy a minority position in Sporting as part of any bid.
Both the eight-year contract and the offer to Ugarte appear to be off the table, with PSG set to move quickly to finalise a deal.
While the prevailing opinion is that Chelsea prioritised Ugarte, they also have other targets on their radar, including Brighton & Hove Albion’s Moises Caicedo.
Nonetheless, the Seagulls are expected to seek around £80 million for the Ecuador international, who is also being pursued by Arsenal.
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