CHELSEA remain interested in Sevilla's Jules Kounde despite failing to land the defender in the transfer window, reports say.
The Blues saw a £42.8million bid rejected by Sevilla, who are holding out for his £68m release clause.
According to La Colina de Nervion, Thomas Tuchel remains interested in French international Kounde.
But the transfer depends on the future of Antonio Rudiger, who is locked in contract extension talks with just a year left on his current deal.
Chelsea are planning for the worst case scenario, which could see Rudiger reject a new contract putting them at risk of losing him for free in the summer of 2022.
The report states that should the Blues cash in on the Real Madrid-linked defender, it could 'accelerate a new attack' in the bid to sign Kounde.
The Frenchman will be hoping the two clubs can strike a deal at some point in the future.
Kounde was allegedly fuming Sevilla blocked his transfer move to Chelsea, according to the Spanish Football Podcast.
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'Brave' Rudiger is a player who Tuchel likes a lot and someone he would very much like to keep.
The German boss said back in May: "If Toni [Rudiger] wants to stay at the club then he has our full support.
"Nothing is better than what is doing for a new contract. He is speaking with his performances and has been amazing.
"He is very brave and full of energy in his defending. He is leading by example and has a very positive aggressivity in him.
"This is what we like.
"When he can channel all this into top performances, we are all very happy to have him."
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