Bolton Wanderers manager Owen Coyle has confirmed that Chelsea have taken a step closer to signing highly rated defender Gary Cahill.
"Regarding Gary Cahill, there has been dialogue between ourselves and Chelsea," Coyle told the BBC on Friday.
The English defender has impressed fans and pundits alike, often partnering John Terry in the heart of England's defence when Rio Ferdinand was out injured.
He will be out of contract at the end of the season and Bolton risk losing him for free if they do not sell now, given the fact that Cahill might not renew his stay at The Reebok Stadium.
Arsenal had a bid turned down for him in August but interest has always been high in the player who joined Bolton from Aston Villa in a £5 million deal in 2008.
Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas also confirmed the interest. "We are aware of Gary's contractual situation. He's an interesting player for the club."
With Brazilian defender Alex put up for sale after he handed in his transfer request, Chelsea will look to bolster their defence and Cahill will be a very good acquisition considering his performances for club and country.
"I've always known there was interest in Gary. He's a top player," Coyle told the Daily Star.
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Updated Date: Dec 25, 2011 12:56:39 IST