The French defender was close to joining Chelsea when a late Barcelona offer changed the course of his latest transfer.
Sevilla director Monchi has revealed Chelsea’s hesitation to complete a move for Jules Kounde has allowed Barcelona to sign the defender.
Barcelona confirmed Kounde’s transfer earlier this week, adding him to Chelsea’s long list of transfer setbacks this summer.
The likes of Robert Lewandowski, Ousmane Dembele and Raphinha were all on Chelsea’s radar this summer. But they have ended up in Xavi Hernandez’s squad for the next season.
“On Thursday, we reached a verbal agreement with Chelsea. The player had also agreed personal terms with the English side. But everything stopped over the weekend,” Monchi told SFC Radio.
“In that tug of war with Chelsea, Mateu Alemany (Barcelona sporting director) contacted me on Monday.
“After working on amounts, we reached an agreement, achieving the most important sale in the club’s history.”
Kounde will join Gerard Pique, Ronald Araujo, and Eric Garcia at the heart of Barcelona’s backline next season. This will leave Chelsea without another one of their top transfer targets, with whom they planned to make up for Antonio Rudiger’s departure.
Monchi added: “Kounde agreed on the sale to Chelsea, there was an agreement with the player. At the club, they hesitated and said they wanted to wait. That wait continued and Barça appeared. It is true that Chelsea later wanted to return, but Barça’s offer at the end was better.
“There were several suitors at the beginning of the summer, but only Chelsea and Barcelona remained at the end. Chelsea began to have doubts, not about the player but the way to approach the market for defensive reinforcements. Their offer was good but they decided to stop.
“Alemany voiced his interest to us, we asked him for an offer and one arrived that is lower than we had in mind. After working on it with a significant effort from Barcelona, we reached a significant amount.”