Chelsea learned their lesson from earlier this summer and are now looking to usurp Manchester United in the transfer market. After Football Club Barcelona stole Raphinha and Jules Kounde right from under its nose, the west London club is now hoping to do the same to United's two transfer targets.

Frenkie de Jong has been United manager Erik ten Hag's number one target this summer. The 20-time English champions had agreed a deal worth €85 million with the Catalan giants, but were unable to convince the player to leave the Camp Nou for Old Trafford.

While FC Barcelona is not stating it openly, it is clear that the club is desperate to sell De Jong this summer. The Dutchman's sale will not only help them raise funds to balance their books, but it will also see them slash their over-inflated wage bill.

Frenkie de Jong
Frenkie de Jong, Barcelona Fran Santiago/Getty Images

De Jong has remained firm in his stance about wanting to stay in the Camp Nou, but is likely to want to leave if Xavi Hernandez does not guarantee him regular playing time. The Netherlands international will only leave for a club playing in the Champions League, which Chelsea can offer him.

According to The Athletic's David Ornstein, Chelsea have opened talks with FC Barcelona about signing De Jong this summer and are optimistic about sealing a deal. The Catalan club is even thought to be willing to reduce the asking price marginally in order to expedite talks.

The second player on Chelsea's wanted list is Red Bull Salzburg striker Benjamin Sesko. The 19-year-old popped up on European clubs' radars after an impressive showing for the Austrian Bundesliga club last season.

United was leading the chase after holding multiple meetings with the striker's representatives, but could now see Chelsea swoop in. The Stamford Bridge outfit, according to Italian transfer expert Fabrizio Romano, held a meeting with Sesko's agent last week.

The Red Devils and Chelsea are willing to meet RB Salzburg's asking price, even though the Austrian outfit is reluctant to part with the young forward. If both Premier League clubs meet Red Bull Salzburg's requirements, the final decision will be with the player.

Thomas Tuchel
Thomas Tuchel is the new man in charge at Chelsea Frank Augstein/POOL