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Chelsea are closing in on a £35m deal for Monaco midfielder Tiemoue Bakayako. With the 22-year-old coming to Chelsea with such a high-profile, he’d most likely be a sure starter beside N’Golo Kante.

Football pundit Alan Smith believes Bakayako’s signing will affect Nathaniel Chalobah, as the Chelsea midfielder will lack opportunities once again.

Chalobah was with the England Under-21s at the European Championship in Poland and Smith thinks Bakayako’s arrival will stall his growth.

“Chelsea have nearly bought a central midfielder haven’t they, which is going to block Nathaniel Chalobah’s path,” Smith said on Sky Sports.

“You’re thinking he will probably have to leave. That goes right across the board with a lot of the boys.

“People like Alfie Mawson, no disrespect, but at a slightly lower level of team in Swansea can have a career.

“Jordan Pickford, obviously going to Everton, that’s a brilliant move for him. It is really difficult, Germany are the same.

“Most of their boys are playing at top teams in the Bundesliga and of course your development happens so much quicker when you are at that level of football.

“You’re learning much more than you otherwise would.”

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