Chelsea on Saturday signed centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly on a four-year deal from Serie A side Napoli.
Koulibaly joined Napoli from Genk in 2014 and made 317 appearances for the Italian side. He made his senior debut for Senegal in September 2015 and has since earned 62 caps, captaining the team to victory at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.
“I’m very happy to be here with this team at Chelsea. It’s a big team in the world and my dream was always to play in the Premier League,” Koulibaly said in a statement.
“Chelsea came first to get me in 2016 but we didn’t make it. Now when they came to me I accepted it because they really wanted me to come to the Premier League to play for them. When I spoke to my good friends Edou and Jorginho they made my choice easier so I’m really happy to be with you today,” he added.
Koulibaly’s arrival at Stamford Bridge follows the departures of defenders Antonio Rudiger to Real Madrid and Andreas Christensen to Barcelona, both on free transfers.
The 31-year becomes Chelsea’s second signing since the Todd Boehly-led takeover after Raheem Sterling joined the club.
“Kalidou Koulibaly is one of the world’s elite defenders and we are delighted to be welcoming him to Chelsea. A great leader and an exemplary team player, Kalidou brings a wealth of experience and attributes that will benefit our squad and the club as a whole,” said Todd Boehly, chairman and co-controlling owner.
(Inputs from IANS)