Shakhtar Donetsk star Alex Teixeira has welcomed the reported interest from Chelsea, admitting he owes it to himself to move onto a bigger club this year. The Brazilian forward has been one of Europe's most prolific goal scorers this season, having netted 22 times in the league already this term.
The 26-year-old has made little secret of his desire to secure a move to the Premier League, telling Brazilian outlet Lance! in November it is a "dream" of his to play in England. Teixeira has also admitted in the past he is aware of interest from the Blues although was quick to stress at the time there was "nothing concrete."
The uncapped Brazilian now admits he is pleased still to be linked with a move to Stamford Bridge with plans to make a move in the near future.
"It is great to have a club like Chelsea interested in me," Teixeira told O Globo. "I always try to do my job well and play to my best. Shakhtar Donetsk are not very big in Brazil, and I think I may need to move on to stand out and earn a place in the [Brazil] squad. That is my goal for 2016."
But if Chelsea wish to sign the Brazilian to help address their faltering season, they will have to pay top dollar. "Alex is now worth more than €40m (£30m)," Shakhtar boss Lucescu was quoted as saying by Tutto Mercato Web in December. "I think at the end of the season, were he to continue with this level of performance – his value will be €50m (£38m)."
Lucescu adds that if Teixeira was already playing in a more established league then his fee would be closer to the £44.3m Paris Saint-Germain paid Manchester United for Angel di Maria. "If he was playing in a more competitive league, the transfer would be at the same level as that of Di Maria."
Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink has remained coy on the subject of the Blues adding another forward option to their ranks during the January transfer window. Diego Costa, the club's first choice option up front, suffered a shin injury in the 3-3 draw with Everton on Saturday January 16, but the club have since confirmed the Spain international suffered only bruising rather than a fracture.
It remains to be seen whether Costa, 27, will be fit to return in time for Premier League clash with Arsenal on Sunday January 24.