Sanctions set to sink Russian prodigy’s Chelsea hopes – media

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Arsen Zakharyan has been linked with a move to the Premier League

A potential deal to take teenage Russian midfielder Arsen Zakharyan from Dynamo Moscow to Chelsea has been “blocked” because of sanctions, according to reports, as the clock ticks down to the end of the summer transfer window.

Zakharyan, 19, is widely regarded as his country’s brightest young football prospect. Reports last week indicated that he was on the verge of a move to the Premier League, with Chelsea said to be willing to meet his €15 million ($15 million) release clause.

Talk has cooled in recent days, however, after it was reported in the Russian media that snags had emerged regarding the potential transfer or funds to Dynamo. 

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Zakharyan could move to England. © RIA / Aleksandr Vilf
Chelsea trying to salvage deal for Russian teenager – media

Sport24 stated on Tuesday that the issue specifically surrounded the English FA and Barclays bank.

The London Evening Standard has now reported that “sanctions on the Russian economy” because of the conflict in Ukraine “are now expected to block any move” for Zakharyan to the team managed by Thomas Tuchel.

The news will come as a blow to some football fans in Russia, who had been keen to see one of their best talents progress in his career at an elite European level.

Attacking midfielder Zakharyan has won four caps for Russia – becoming their youngest ever outfield player last September at the age of 18 years, three months and five days old – and has made more than 50 appearances for Dynamo Moscow, scoring 13 times and providing 16 assists.

While the Russian youngster now appears unlikely to join Chelsea, the spending spree at Stamford Bridge under new US owner Todd Boehly is reportedly still not finished after he took over from Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich. 

Chelsea unveiled defender Wesley Fofana in a £75 million ($87 million) deal from Leicester City on Wednesday – taking their summer outlay to beyond £250 million ($290 million).

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Fofana joins the Blues from Leicester City. © Jacques Feeney / Offside via Getty Images
Chelsea summer spending spree surpasses $250 million

A deal for striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Barcelona could still happen, with defender Marcos Alonso heading the other way as part of a cash-plus-player agreement.

Elsewhere, the Blues have made a late £43 million ($50 million) bid for Ajax midfielder Edson Alvarez, although the Dutch club are said to be adamant that he will not leave.  

Chelsea have also been strongly linked to RB Leipzig center-back Josko Gvardiol in a potential £77.4 million ($90 million) deal, but the 20-year-old Croatian would only move to Stamford Bridge next summer.

The current transfer window closes in England on Thursday, September 1, at 11pm local time.  



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