Chelsea ahead of Man Utd in Raphael Varane transfer race with Real Madrid defender also wanted by PSG this summer

CHELSEA have jumped ahead of Manchester United in the transfer chase for Real Madrid star Raphael Varane.

The Frenchman is about to enter the final 12 months of his contract and has yet to agree terms on an extension.

That could force the LaLiga giants to cash in this summer rather than risk losing him for nothing the following year.

The defender, who celebrated his 28th birthday yesterday, remains a key man for Zinedine Zidane’s side and has only missed five games this campaign.

But Spanish news outlet Mundo Deportivo claims he remains unconvinced about committing his future to Madrid.

And they report Chelsea are willing to splash out £61million to bring the World Cup winner to Stamford Bridge.

Madrid are desperate for cash and the expectant arrival of David Alaba on a free from Bayern Munich will ensure a replacement for Varane.

However, Chelsea will face a huge fight to secure the centre-back’s signature.

Paris Saint-Germain want him and Manchester United have also held a long-term interest in the former Lens man.

United have also been linked with Varane's defensive partner at Real Madrid, Sergio Ramos.

The club legend is also yet to agree a new deal, and would be available on a free.

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel will have the opportunity to get a closer look at Varane tomorrow.

The Blues head to Madrid for the first-leg of their Champions League semi-final.

Varane has won the competition four times as well as three domestic titles since his arrival in the Spanish capital a decade ago.

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