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Chelsea sign Brighton defender for record fee

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Sulaimon Jamiu

Chelsea have signed Brighton & Hove Albion left-back, Marc Cucurella for a fee of £55 million and £7million add-ons.

The six-year contract will keep the defender at the Stamford Bridge until 2028.

The transfer of Cucurella is Brighton’s record sale, surpassing the £50m Arsenal paid for centre-back Ben White last summer.

He arrives just weeks after his 24th birthday following an impressive debut season in the Premier League with the Seagulls, during which time he made 38 appearances in all competitions and scored his only goal in their penultimate home game against Manchester United.

Such was the positive and swift nature of his adaptation to English football, playing in a variety of roles on the left-hand side including full-back, wing-back and centre-back, Cucurella was voted Player of the Season by both Brighton supporters and team-mates.

In particular, his high-energy performances, tough tackling and marauding down the wing caught the eye, while his two-footedness and assuredness on the ball were key traits in Brighton’s possession-based approach as they secured a best ever top-flight finish of ninth.

It is worthy of note that only three players registered more than his 93 tackles in the Premier League last term.

On signing for Chelsea, Cucurella said: “I’m really happy. It’s a big opportunity for me to join one of the best clubs in the world and I’m going to work hard to be happy here and help the team.”

Chelsea chairman Todd Boehly described the Spaniard as an “elite defender of proven Premier League quality”, adding that his arrival would strengthen the squad in the new season.

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