Bournemouth are hoping to secure the return of Nathan Ake this summer, with Cherries stalwart Charlie Daniels insisting that the versatile Chelsea defender would be welcomed back to the Vitality Stadium with "open arms".
Ake spent the first half of the 2016-17 campaign on loan at Bournemouth, where he eventually forced his way into the starting XI and scored three times in 12 total appearances. His early recall to Stamford Bridge during the early stages of the January transfer window was lamented by manager Eddie Howe as a "big blow".
Bournemouth made a late bid to sign Ake later that month, but were promptly rebuffed. Undeterred, The Sun recently claimed that the club were in pole position to complete a £20m+ ($25.5m) permanent deal for the Netherlands international having seemingly missed out on the free agent signing of his former teammate John Terry.
The latter is said to be weighing up more than 10 offers from around the world after calling time on a trophy-laden 22-year stint in west London.
The report stated that Bournemouth were leading other unnamed suitors in the race to land Ake, who is expected to sign after returning from holiday in July. It is a move that would clearly have the backing of former Tottenham Hotspur defender Daniels, who believes that it is "no surprise" that Howe's side continue to be linked with high-profile players after sealing their maiden top-half Premier League finish last term.
"I thought he [Ake] was a very good acquisition for us last season," he told the Bournemouth Echo. "It was a shame he had to go back to Chelsea when he did. He was a great person to have in the squad and he scored some important goals for us.
"We would welcome him back with open arms."
Chelsea are yet to bolster their title-winning squad so far this summer, although it looks set to complete a big-money double deal for AS Monaco midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko and Juventus left-back Alex Sandro in the near future.
They are also believed to be targeting the addition of a new central defender amid links to the likes of Leonardo Bonucci and Virgil van Dijk, a move that would see Ake, who featured only five times for Chelsea towards the end of last season and was primarily used as bench cover, slide even further down the pecking order. Highly-rated prospect Andreas Christensen is also scheduled to return after a productive two-year loan stint with Borussia Monchengladbach.
The Blues have already concluded one piece of swift transfer business with Bournemouth, offloading second-choice goalkeeper Asmir Begovic in a deal worth £10m. Bertrand Traore, Christian Atsu and Juan Cuadrado have also left on a permanent basis, along with Terry and Liverpool-bound Dominic Solanke. Nemanja Matic is expected to reunite with Jose Mourinho at Manchester United.