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CHELSEA faces a fight to hold on to rising star Ike Ugbo after turning down a £ 3 million offer for its aspiring striker.
Ugbo, 22, impressed in Belgium at Cercle Bruge, where he made headlines with 10 goals in 15 games.
It triggered an offer from the Russian top club FC Rostov, which the Blues have already rejected.
But the further development of the London Ugbo is causing rival clubs to become aware of the Chelsea Academy child, who has been with them since the U10 class.
Ugbo won the FA Youth Cup under then-Chelsea U-18 coach Jody Morris, who is now assistant to the team’s first head coach, Frank Lampard.
He has also represented England in youth and is under contract with Chelsea until 2022 after renewing his contract last season.
Ugbo has also been loaned to Barnsley, Scunthorpe and Roda FC in Holland and is a highly rated product of the Chelsea Youth Academy.
He is eager to follow in the footsteps of fellow Academy members Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Reece James and join the first team at Stamford Bridge.
Earlier this month Ugbo said: « I’m a real Londoner and I think Chelsea will always be the biggest club in the capital.
« Chelsea would be the ultimate dream. As a child I admired Didier Drogba and John Terry.
A number of youths have had success in recent years after leaving Chelsea permanently in search of first-team action.
Nathan Ake impressed three seasons at Bournemouth, making a £ 41m move to Manchester City, while Tariq Lamptey received rave reviews in Brighton.
On the continent, Jeremie Boga has established himself with Sassuolo in Serie A and scored 11 league goals last season.
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World News – AU – Chelsea struggle to keep rising star Ugbo after rejecting a £ 3m transfer bid
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