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Chelsea and Manchester United given fresh hope in race to sign £72m midfielder


Chelsea and Manchester United have received a major boost in their battle to sign Axel Witsel.

The player was a confirmed target for Milan but director Adriano Galliani told reporters that they will no longer chase the player.

"We tried to the end for Witsel, but we knew it would finish this way," Galliani said.

However, if the two English clubs want to sign the midfielder then they will have to meet the player's release clause of €100m(£72m).

"The Belgian is still a Zenit player, the amount for his release clause is €100m," said a statement from TASS, Zenit’s press service.

It is unlikely that Chelsea and Manchester United will meet the Belgian's release clause, especially the Blues who are focusing all their efforts on Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba.

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Adriano Galliani, Axel Witsel