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Lazio 'ready to join race to sign Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi'

Lazio 'ready to join race to sign Chelsea winger Hudson-Odoi'
© Reuters
Lazio allegedly become the latest club to identify Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi as a summer transfer target.

Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi has reportedly emerged as a transfer target for Lazio.

Up until March of last year, the Blues academy graduate was relied upon by head coach Thomas Tuchel, contributing an assist as Chelsea won the Club World Cup.

However, shortly after that impact, Hudson-Odoi was sidelined for the remainder of the campaign through injury, and the decision was made during the following summer that he would be allowed to go out on loan.

His season-long stint at Bayer Leverkusen failed to live up to expectation, just one goal and one assist coming from his 21 appearances across all competitions.

As expected, the Bundesliga outfit opted against taking up their option to sign the England international on a permanent deal, and he is now back at Chelsea awaiting offers for his signature.

Callum Hudson-Odoi celebrates scoring for Bayer Leverkusen on October 4, 2022© Reuters

With just over a year left on his contract and no longer being regarded as a senior option, the 22-year-old will almost certainly be sold over the coming months.

The likes of Crystal Palace and Nottingham Forest have both been credited with an interest in the playmaker, both sides in a position where they could offer him regular action.

Nevertheless, according to Corriere dello Sport, Lazio have placed Hudson-Odoi on a shortlist of possible additions.

That development is likely to have come from the familiarity between boss Maurizio Sarri and Hudson-Odoi, the pair having worked together during the Italian's time at Stamford Bridge.

Lazio coach Maurizio Sarri reacts on May 3, 2023© Reuters

Sarri was in charge for Hudson-Odoi's breakout campaign, the then-teenager notably accumulating four goals and two assists during nine appearances in the Europa League.

With Lazio having qualified for the Champions League and looking to strengthen, the acquisition of Hudson-Odoi for a cut-price fee may suit all parties in the present circumstances.

Chelsea are in a position where they need to boost their FFP position as soon as possible and cashing in on an academy graduate for what would be regarded as 'pure profit' in the books would fit their agenda.

The report adds that Ruben Loftus-Cheek - who has also been linked with AC Milan - is also an option for Lazio for similar reasons to Hudson-Odoi, Loftus-Cheek having enjoyed his best season in a Chelsea shirt under Sarri during 2018-19 before sustaining a serious Achilles injury.

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Callum Hudson-Odoi in action for Bayer Leverkusen on September 7, 2022
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