Chelsea have made Atletico Madrid centre-back Jose Gimenez their number one defender target this summer, Football Insider has learned.

The 25-year-old is seen as the man to solve the London-club’s defensive problems after negotiations with West Ham stalled regarding the signing of Declan Rice.

A source at Stamford Bridge has told Football Insider that Chelsea hope to sign Gimenez, who has a release clause of £110million, for around £60million.

He has made 26 appearances so far this season having struggled with numerous injury problems over the past 12 months.

Regardless, Frank Lampard is ready to make a move for the Uruguay international as soon as Atletico complete their participation in the Champions League.

The Spanish side face RB Leipzig in the quarter-final next Thursday with the final of Europe’s most prestigious competition scheduled for the 23rd of this month.

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London rivals West Ham have dug their heels in over their valuation of Rice after multiple attempts by Chelsea to broker a deal.

Football Insider revealed last month that the Hammers would sell their prize asset but only for £80million in cash.

One of Chelsea’s offers involved one or more of Fikayo Tomori, Kurt Zouma and Michy Batshuayi in exchange for the 21-year-old.

He has been utilised predominantly as a holding midfielder by David Moyes but it is understood that Lampard sees him as a centre-half.

Rice, who has four years remaining on his contract at the London Stadium, did not miss a single minute of Premier League action last season.

However, it looks as if he may miss out on a move to Stamford Bridge this summer with Chelsea’s attention now turned to Gimenez.

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