Chelsea midfielder Josh McEachran has been linked with a move to Real Sociedad as replacement for Asier Illarramendi, who joined Real Madrid earlier this summer.
Spanish daily AS reported that after previous target Jonathan Dos Santos decided to stay at Barcelona, La Real would turn their attention to bringing in the Chelsea youngster on a season-long loan. The Blues have no intention of selling McEachran, but the paper said the London club were keen for him to gain first-team experience.
The 20-year-old, who joined Chelsea as an eight-year-old, spent last season on loan at Middlesbrough, making 38 appearances for the Championship side.
There was a chance of the England Under-21 international returning to Teesside, but Boro boss Tony Mowbray decided not to take him for another season. “He's a very talented boy and, for half a season last year, he performed at a high level for us,” Mowbray said. "But I think those positions are probably filled in our team now."
Dos Santos, meanwhile, said he had decided to stay at Barcelona after receiving assurances from coach ‘Tata Martino’ that he was part of his plans. He tweeted: “I’m delighted to tell you that I am staying at Barca. My dream is now closer than ever to coming true: being a success at Barca.”