Graham Potter has already found the perfect heir to N’Golo Kante’s throne at Chelsea ahead of the January transfer window – Moises Caicedo.
The 20-year-old midfielder was heavily linked with an exit from Brighton and Hove Albion this summer following an impressive campaign at the Amex Stadium last season.
Caicedo – who sees his contract on the south coast expire in 2025 – featured eight times in the Premier League for Potter’s former side, directly contributing to two goals. Despite only appearing for the Seagulls in the latter stages of the campaign, he impressed and left his mark with a long-range effort versus Manchester United.
The Ecuador international continues to be a mainstay in the Brighton side, reportedly courting the interest of Arsenal and Liverpool. However, with Caicedo likened to Kante, Chelsea have been told why the midfielder could be the ideal option at Stamford Bridge instead, especially given his previous working relationship with Potter.
Speaking on the talkSPORT Hawksbee and Jacobs show in January 2021, Tim Vickery said that Caicedo would be a ‘wonderful signing. The south American expert said: “I’m a huge fan.
“And a lot of the teenagers that Europeans now want from South America are being bought on promise. This fella is already a reality and he has just taken everything in his stride.
“He has just stepped up to a pretty good first team in Ecuador, he stepped up to international football with the Ecuador national team who are flying. He is the first player born in the 21st century to score a goal in South American World Cup qualification and he is an all-rounder.”
Vickery added: “He was talking about Kante of Chelsea being his role model and he is already more than that. In say, a 4-2-3-1, he is like that second man in that line of two so he can defend, but he can also bomb forward.
“He’s timing his runs very well, he’s cool in possession and he seems to have the whole lot. I think he is a wonderful, wonderful signing.”
However, Potter may have already shot himself – and Chelsea – in the foot, should the Blues look to register an interest in the talent midfielder. The former Brighton boss recently slapped a £100million price tag on Caicedo.
During the final days of the window, Potter was asked about a £42million bid for Caicedo. He said: “You’d probably get his boots for that from the chairman – maybe! £100m? They can try.
“It doesn’t surprise me that people are looking at him because he is playing at a fantastic level. As soon as you do research on him you realise he is a top kid, great person, young, playing in the Premier League, has all the attributes to play at the very, very highest level.”