Chelsea leading Manchester United and Arsenal in race to sign Stoke City defender Nathan Collins

Chelsea are leading the race to sign Nathan Collins from Stoke City
Chelsea are leading the race to sign Nathan Collins from Stoke City (Picture: Getty)

Chelsea are ahead of Premier League rivals Manchester United and Arsenal in the race to sign Stoke City defender Nathan Collins, according to reports.

Collins, 18, is regarded as one of the most talented and promising players outside of the Premier League.

The teenager made his first-team debut at the start of the season and has gone on to feature 12 times for Stoke, who are currently 17th in the Championship.

Manchester United expressed interest in signing Collins last year but he ended up signing a new contract at Stoke as the Red Devils stalled over launching a move.

United are still monitoring Collins’ situation ahead of the summer transfer window, while Arsenal have scouted the Republic of Ireland U21 defender regularly this term.

But The Sun say Chelsea are showing ‘strong interest’ in Collins and are currently at the front of the queue to secure his signature.

It is claimed a number of Premier League clubs believe Collins has the physical attributes to compete at the highest level despite his inexperience.

The Blues face competition from Premier League rivals Man Utd and Arsenal
Frank Lampard’s Blues face competition from Man Utd and Arsenal (Picture: Getty)

Collins was named in Mick McCarthy’s Ireland squad last summer but is yet to feature for his country.

Chelsea look set for a spending spree this summer if the coronavirus crisis settles down and Frank Sinclair says his former club need to strengthen in two areas.

‘There are two obvious positions in which Chelsea need to improve their squad – left back and a striker,’ ex-Chelsea defender Sinclair told GentingBet.

‘Both left backs this season, Emerson and [Marcos] Alonso, haven’t really grasped that position and played a lot of games consistently.

‘Lampard will also need to address the centre forward situation at the club.

‘Tammy Abraham has been excellent, but he has really had to carry the baton on his own all season.’

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