LATEST REPORTS FROM SPAIN: Chelsea ‘agree Kovacic loan deal’

Chelsea have agreed a loan deal to sign Real Madrid midfielder Mateo Kovacic, according to reports in the Spanish press.

Marca lead reports that the Croatian international will move to Stamford Bridge following the player telling the European champions he would not return to training in order to force an exit.

A report in Marca last week said the 24-year-old spoke to Lopetegui following his return from the World Cup and insisted he wished to depart the Bernabeu for more first-team opportunities.

A report in Sky Sports earlier this month that Manchester City wanted the midfielder but Madrid responded by stating he was priced at €80m, which killed the potential of any move.

The Croat has started only 37 La Liga games across three seasons and started only 10 in his most recent campaign.

Kovacic joined the European champions from Inter in 2015 in a €35m deal, having originally cost the Milanese giants €11m from Dinamo Zagreb.