Media Watch: Chelsea linked to Verratti, Essien feels Blues can challenge for the title and Kane praises Mount

In our look at the latest Chelsea-related news stories from the media, the Blues are reportedly interested in Marco Verratti while Michael Essien feels we can challenge for the Premier League next season.

These stories are samples pulled from external media sources. They do not represent the views or position of Chelsea Football Club.

Blues linked to Verratti

Chelsea are reportedly interested in Italian midfielder Marco Verratti.

According to a report in 90mins, the 28-year-old is on the shortlist for potential summer signings after another impressive Champions League campaign.

The midfielder has appeared in nearly 350 games for Paris Saint-Germain since joining the club and has won seven Ligue 1 titles, including four domestic trebles.

The report states that the player is open to the idea of moving to London after spending nine years at the Parc des Princes.

Blues manager Thomas Tuchel is known to be a fan of the midfielder after they worked together during his time in France.

Verratti is highly regarded as one of the craftiest central midfielders in Europe and he was also very influential in Paris Saint-Germain’s Champions League run to the final last season.

If the Blues are to try and bring the player to Stamford Bridge in the summer, they will face competition from both Manchester clubs and Liverpool, three teams that have also been monitoring the midfielder for some time.

Essien tips Blues for title challenge

Former Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien feels the Blues have a chance of challenging for the title next season.

Speaking in a report that was repeated in the Metro, the Ghanaian legend also praised Thomas Tuchel for the impact he has made at Stamford Bridge.

‘I’m going to say Chelsea win the league next season, based on how good they’ve looked since Thomas Tuchel has taken over,’ he said. ‘They are my first choice for the title.

‘With the players Tuchel has got at his disposal, I think he’s got all the tools needed to challenge for the title next season.’

The Blues have the chance to end the season with two trophies and can qualify for next year’s Champions League. We currently sit fourth in the table and six points ahead of rivals West Ham.

‘If you look from the goalkeeper to the forwards, they’ve got big names all over the pitch,’ he added. ‘I love the fact that they’ve got Thiago Silva at the back. His experience is vital to that team.’

Kane praises Mount

Tottenham striker Harry Kane has labelled his England team-mate Mason Mount as a ‘special player’.

Speaking to BeIN Sport, the England captain was asked about the upcoming talent in the national team and the Premier League and cited the 22-year-old as one of the best.

‘Mount is a fantastic player,’ Kane said in his interview. ‘He is great on the ball and has a great work ethic.

‘He wins balls back and makes tackles. It is an underrated part of his game.’

The midfielder has been near ever-present for the Blues this season, making his 50th appearance this campaign last night against Arsenal. So far this season, he has nine goals and eight assists in all competitions.

‘He is a truly special player,’ Kane added. ‘It’s great for him to be playing in the Champions League final in a few weeks’ time. He was great against Madrid.’