Chelsea sign Fofana from Leicester for £70m

New Chelsea signing Wesley Fofana poses for a photograph with Todd Boehly, Chairman of Chelsea as he signs for Chelsea at Chelsea Training Ground on August 31, 2022 in Cobham, England.

Chelsea have signed French centre-back Wesley Fofana from Leicester City on a seven-year deal for a fee in the region of £70m.

France Under-21 international Fofana has made 37 Premier League appearance since joining Leicester from French side Saint-Etienne in 2020.

He was restricted to just seven league games during the 2021-22 campaign after breaking his leg in pre-season.

"The two last days have been really big for me and I'm very happy," he said.

"I trained this morning with the team and it's a dream for me. I'm very excited to start playing games for the fans and the club.

"I'm here to win trophies - the Champions League, Premier League, FA Cup, Carabao Cup, everything. I came here to win and the club is built to win trophies so I'm here to continue that."

He is the third most expensive Premier League defender behind Manchester United's £80m purchase of Harry Maguire in 2019 - also from Leicester - and Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk, who joined the Reds for £75m in 2017.

Fofana's initial fee makes him the 12th most expensive Premier League signing, but he will drop to 13th when Manchester United complete the £81.3m signing of Antony.

The Fofana deal takes Premier League clubs' record summer transfer window expenditure to almost £1.7bn going into Thursday's deadline day - and that is set to rise even further. The previous record for summer spending had been the £1.43bn spent in 2017.

Chelsea chairman Todd Boehly - who has spent almost £250m in his first transfer window since buying the club from Roman Abramovich - said: "Wesley is a hugely promising defender who has already proven his quality in the Premier League at a young age.

"We are delighted we were able to bring one of Europe's most exciting talents to Chelsea and further strengthen that area of our squad, both for this season and many more to come."

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