Chelsea and Tottenham transfer battle as Mourinho hijacks plan to sign Kepa replacement

Chelsea and Tottenham are set for a transfer tug-of-war over Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope. Both clubs have identified the England international as a target ahead of the summer transfer window as they look to solve their respective issues between the posts.

Chelsea have been long-time admirers of Pope and have listed the 27-year-old among a host of high-profile targets who could replace Kepa Arrizabalaga at Stamford Bridge.

However, former manager Jose Mourinho could scupper the Blues’ plans with Tottenham reportedly now entering the race for the Clarets stopper as they hunt for a successor to Hugo Lloris.

Football.London claim the Spurs boss is looking to ship out Lloris due to several shaky performances at the start of the season followed by a serious elbow injury.

The World Cup winner has kept just two clean sheets in 18 appearances so far this season while his deputy Paulo Gazzaniga has also failed to impress.

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The Argentine has just two shut-outs himself so Pope, who leads the way in the Premier League with 11 clean sheets this term, is considered a significant upgrade.

Express Sport understands Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is keen to offload Kepa this summer and would preferably bring in an English replacement.

However, the Blues have also been linked with Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Manuel Neuer, Jan Oblak, Andre Onana, Dean Henderson, Gianluigi Donnarumma and Juan Musso as speculation about a switch gathers pace.

Lampard is believed to remain unconvinced about Kepa’s ability, despite the Spaniard becoming the world’s most expensive goalkeeper when he moved to Stamford Bridge from Athletic Bilbao in a £72million deal in 2018.

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A number of high-profile errors saw the 25-year-old dropped in favour of veteran stopper Willy Caballero earlier this season, although Lampard did recall Kepa shortly before the coronavirus outbreak postponed all football fixtures.

Chelsea are reluctant to take a big financial hit on their goalkeeper, who was handed a seven-year deal upon arrival at the club – despite being the Blues’ third choice at the time.

Atletico Madrid supposedly turned down an £89m deal for Oblak while Roma rejected more than one offer for Alisson, who subsequently joined Liverpool.

Real Madrid are believed to be interested in Kepa, but Lampard is yet to completely close the door on the Blues goalkeeper staying at the club next season.

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  • How much Chelsea are willing to pay for Man Utd star Dean Henderson

“I have read a lot of false articles, probably guessing on players,” he said recently

“Every time I see a Chelsea player put on the shirt they are in control of their own destiny somewhat individually.

“You can’t always control collectively the result. All I am focusing on is game by game to get the best finish to the season that we can possibly get.

“Then of course there are decisions for the club ongoing in the summer, we have to look at that.

“But no way am I jumping forward to the future now and a lot of those reports are wrong.”

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