Chelsea cast eye over Cani
By Mark Kendall
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Chelsea have been to run the rule over Zaragoza's highly-rated midfielder Ruben Cani.
Reports in Spain claim Chelsea sent a representative to watch Real Zaragoza in action last month with skilful midfielder Ruben Cani the subject of their interest.
The 24-year-old, known just as Cani, is a product of Zaragoza's youth system and now captains his hometown club.
He has really begun to fulfil his potential this term, turning in a number of eye-catching displays, especially during Zaragoza's run to the Copa del Rey final.
Chelsea went to watch him in action during Zaragoza's league match at Osasuna on February 11, a game which also allowed them to run the rule over Osasuna's teenage midfielder Raul Garcia who has attracted rave reviews this term.
Cani was forced off at half time in the game in question, but is understood to have still done enough to impress The Blues' scout.
On the verge of a call-up to the Spanish national team, Cani is being monitored by a host of Primera sides with Valencia, Atletico Madrid and Deportivo La Coruna all closely following his progress with an eye on a summer swoop.
His suitors have been given encouragement by the fact he is locked in contract talks with Zaragoza having so far failed to extend his current deal which expires in 2007.
However, the player has always made it clear he wants to stay at La Romareda and would only consider a move if talks broke down altogether which seems unlikely considering his value to the club.
Given Chelsea's financial clout, though, Zaragoza might just consider their position should the West Londoners decide to firm up their interest in a player Jose Mourinho is known to rate highly.