By Will Butcher

Chelsea are eyeing a shock move for £18million-rated Newcastle captain Jamaal Lascelles, according to a report.

The centre-back has been in superb form for the Toon this season, helping to guide his side to the top of the Championship under Rafa Benitez’s management.

According to The Sun, the former Nottingham Forest star’s form has alerted Chelsea who are still looking to find a long-term replacement for stalwart and captain John Terry.

Lascelles, 22, has played an integral part in Newcastle’s magnificent form this season, helping keep nine clean sheets in his 17 league and cup appearances.

The 6ft 2in stopper has been one of the first names on the team sheet, with the likes of Grant Hanley, Ciaran Clark and Chancel Mbemba alongside him.

The reported move from Antonio Conte’s side could be considered as surprising, with United States international Matt Miazga Andreas, Christensen and Michael Hector all on the books at Stamford Bridge.

However, with Conte’s desire to play a three-man defence, an abundance of central defenders is needed and Lascelles could be the man the West London outfit turn to. Conte is said to be looking for homegrown players.

Newcastle are under no pressure to sell their centre-back star, with four years still remaining on his contract.

In other Newcastle transfer news, this midfield star has revealed why he joined the Magpies this summer.