Chelsea have emerged as favourites to sign exciting 23-year-old Brazilian Felipe Anderson as he looks to leave Lazio this summer, according to reports from Italy over the weekend. 

Gazzetta dello Sport report that the sudden surge in interest in the Biancocelesti ​star may be something to do with a recent change in agent – hiring Giuliano Bertolucci just a few weeks ago. 

The Blues are believed to have a close connection with Bertolucci, as well as one of his close associates Kia Joorabchian, with Gazzetta claiming that the Italian agent is doing his best to secure a summer move for the 23-year-old – and that his club are getting closer to allowing him to go. 

Anderson was the subject of interest from Manchester United last summer, sparking a long-running transfer saga during which United had at least one concrete bid rejected by the Serie A side as they looked to build their attacking midfield ranks. 

Despite a relatively disappointing domestic campaign last season, which saw his club finish just eighth in the league, Anderson still contributed seven goals and four assists as he continued to push his case forward as one of the most exciting attacking talents currently playing on the continent. 

Anderson’s relationship with Lazio is also said to be particularly rocky at the moment, with the Italians refusing to release him to play in the Olympic football tournament next month, with his Brazilian side looking to win gold on home soil in Rio. 

The tournament kicks off on 4 August, with Brazil named in Group A alongside South Africa, Iraq and Denmark as they look to finally break their duck – with the four-yearly summer tournament still taunting them as the only FIFA-organised international tournament they have failed to win. 

For more from Chris when he’s not writing on 90min, follow him on Twitter at @ThatChris1209!