Does Chelsea's goalkeeping prospect have a release clause in his contract?
A Spanish newspaper is reporting a revelation regarding Thibaut Courtois which won't be welcome to Chelsea fans, the question is whether it is accurate or not.
The Sport daily is claiming that the Belgian stopper has a €24 million release clause in his contract which Barcelona are willing to pay.
¡Buenas noches a tod@s!. Courtois, protagonista en nuestra portada de este jueves: pic.twitter.com/BhJnH8MwuK— Diario SPORT (@Diario_SPORT) October 16, 2013
Barcelona will lose goalkeeper Victor Valdes at the end of the current season, who looks likely to join Monaco when his contract expires.
Sport ran a poll earlier in the week asking fans who their dream goalkeeper would be. 50 per cent responded in favour of Courtois, 24 per cent Ter Stegen, 12 per cent De Gea and just 6 per cent Reina, before even lower figures for several others.
Courtois said this week he ranks himself as one of the top five goalkeepers in the world, and is into his third season on loan at Atletico Madrid, with the Spanish side unbeaten so far this season. He has conceded just six goals in eight La Liga games.
He has also said he is unwilling to return to sit on the bench at the Bridge.
So clearly €24 million would be a bargain for the international stopper, but is it actually true?
Unlike many Spanish and Portuguese clubs, Premier League sides do not typically insert release clauses into players contracts.
We can't ever remember Chelsea losing a player on their books after a release clause was met, and it would be a real surprise if they let Courtois slip from their grasp like this.
It can't be ruled out, and Sport surely have their own sources, but we suspect it's simply part of a continued effort to unsettle the Belgian and get his attention, hinting to him his future should lie at Barcelona and not Chelsea.
What do you think? Are Sport telling the truth?
image: © wshjackson