Chelsea could consider a move for Lille midfielder Boubakary Soumare, should they fail in their pursuit of Declan Rice this summer.
The Blues have already spent more than £220m on seven players and they are still on the search for a new central midfielder.
Rice is obviously the first-choice target for manager Frank Lampard, but a deal could be difficult with the Hammers said to demand around £80m.
Hence, the west London side are considering an alternative target and L’Equipe claims that Soumare has emerged as an option for the Blues.
Newcastle United had a £35m bid accepted for Soumare in January, but he decided to snub their advances to join a bigger club.
He has since struggled to secure regular gametime due to internal issues at Lille and reports claim that he could be available for a lesser fee.
It remains to be seen whether the Blues make an approach to sign him before the international transfer window closes on October 5.