Chelsea have moved ahead of Manchester United in the race to sign Brazilian prodigy Richarlison and hope to get the deal done as early as possible.

The Daily Mail reports that the 20-year-old was primed to join Ajax from Fluminense for a fee believed to be in the range of £12m ($16m) and had reportedly agreed a provisional five-year contract with the Dutch giants but the Premier League champions have entered the race at the last moment to stall the deal.

The versatile forward can play on either side of the wing or be deployed as a lone striker, which had led to interest from Sampdoria and Inter Milan. The Brazil Under-20 international has also led talk of a possible transfer to AC Milan and United. While his agent Renato Velasco has rebuffed links to Milan, he has confirmed that there is indeed major interest from clubs in England.

Speaking to FCInterNews.it last week, Velasco said: "Yes, there is interest from a few clubs in your country. Inter and Sampdoria, yes, but not the Rossoneri, at least not right now. The truth is that he is ready to play for any club, big or small and there is a lot of speculation around him. He is talking about Italy, but also England and Holland."

Mourinho recently voiced his unhappiness at Manchester United's lack of initiative in the transfer market a few days ago and is desperate for a third new face in his squad. However, with the Blues moving ahead in the race, it will bring further disappointment to the Portuguese manager, who has seen his counterpart quietly complete three signings thus far, in the form of Antonio Rudiger, Alvaro Morata and Tiemoue Bakayoko.

Conte recently revealed that he was keen to bring in one more face to the squad as they move to Singapore for their pre-season training. The Blues beat Arsenal 3-0 at the Bird's Nest Stadium in Beijing putting down a marker ahead of their Community Shield showdown in the first week of August before the start of the new season.

Richarlison
Richarlison has been linked with United and Chelsea