Nigeria national football team prospect Michael Olise looks set for a return to Chelsea seven years after leaving the club.
The 21-year-old could now be set for a second spell with the Blues, having spent seven years with the West London outfit as a youth player between 2009-2016.
The Blues, who have fielded a number of Super Eagles greats like John Obi Mikel and Celestine Babayaro, have made contact with the player’s entourage. Some reports claim that the club already have a preliminary agreement with Olise and are preparing a bid for Crystal Palace.
With the exit of AFCON player Wilfried Zaha from Selhurst Park to Galatasaray in the Turkish Super Lig, Chelsea may meet a roadblock in their pursuit of the U-21 France national football team attacking midfielder.
🚨 Chelsea have made an offer of less than €45M to Crystal Palace for Michael Olise. 🇫🇷💰
The player has given the green light on the move.
— Transfer News Live (@DeadlineDayLive) July 24, 2023
Chelsea to pay £4 million more for Michael Olise
RMC Sport reports that Michael Olise, who was happy to remain at Selhurst Park for the foreseeable future, has been enticed by the prospect of playing under Mauricio Pochettino’s exciting project.
The Blues have departed with 13 first-team players this summer but have brought only two replacements on board. Mason Mount is one of the players they have lost and replacing the England international is paramount to Pochettino’s team.
Alongside Ghana international Mohammed Kudus, who plies his trade at Ajax in the Eredivisie, and Palace’s Michael Oliseare options to replace Mount.
Olise, who is eligible to play for Nigeria, France, Algeria and England thanks to his birth and heritage, has a release clause of £35 million. Chelsea have decided to send a £39 million bid to Crystal Palace in order to entice the Eagles’ leadership away from other negotiating tables.
🅰️ No player aged 21 and under registered more assists than Michael Olise in Europe's top 5 leagues last season (11 – Level with Bukayo Saka) pic.twitter.com/2Xdx8sugsl
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) July 24, 2023
The Blues could also consider a swap deal with Palace for Olise. Youngsters Carney Chukwuemeka, Lewis Hall, Cesare Casadei and Diego Moreira are the names being mentioned. Reporters believe that the success of Connor Gallagher’s loan spell at Selhurst Park could make this an attractive deal for the Eagles.
Meanwhile, Olise will be in the physiotherapy room while his agent takes care of his future thanks to a hamstring injury he picked up on international duty with the France U-21 side.
He will be out until at least October which also means he could have played his 63rd and last game for Crystal Palace, who he scored four goals and provided 16 assists for across two seasons.
His addition to Pochettino’s squad will further reduce their age, making Chelsea the youngest team in the Premier League going into the 2023/24 season.
Why the NFF should go after Michael Olise
It has already been established that the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) want Olise to play for the Super Eagles.
In 2022, then-manager of the Super Eagles, Gernot Rohr, was assured by his father that he will do all he could to convince his son to play for the Super Eagles. Former NFF president Amaju Pinnick has also held meetings with the player and his family.
There has been no news about his international future in recent months but his continued involvement with the France youth sides suggests the player is leaning towards the 2018 FIFA World Cup winners. The NFF needs to work harder to convince Olise as he will add strength to our midfield.
Michael Olise plays beautiful football 🔥 pic.twitter.com/0fnafDobZw
— N (@Nino12x) July 23, 2023
Nigeria national football teams fans have already been disappointed by the loss of Eberchi Eze, who could also be trying to win Olise over to the England side by leveraging their friendship.
With the Africa Cup of Nations drawing near, there is no better time to go on the offensive for the highly-rated 21-year-old.
This article was most recently revised and updated 3 months ago