Marc Cucurella will be available for Chelsea’s Premier League debut at Everton after the Blues completed their £60m signing from Brighton.
The 24-year-old centre-back has signed a six-year deal with Chelsea, with Brighton negotiating the sale of a club record in the process.
Spaniard Cucurella adds more quality and depth to Chelsea’s options as a full-back, following previous summer recruits Raheem Sterling, Kalidou Koulibaly and Carney Chukwuemeka at Stamford Bridge.
Levi Colwill also made his season-long loan move to Brighton in a separate deal from Cucurella’s move to Chelsea, but this had to be completed for both transfers to be sealed.
Chelsea paid a hefty sum for Cucurella, where Manchester City declined the asking price earlier in the summer, with manager Thomas Tuchel delighted with the new addition.
Tuchel also revealed that Cucurella’s arrival will help ease pressure on England winger Ben Chilwell, who will need time to get into better shape in his long recovery after knee surgery.
“He is young, hungry, mobile and a very smart player,” said Tuchel de Cucurella.
“It helps in depth and quality, and it helps with Ben, to escape the pressure that I have to deliver and we absolutely need you right now.
“Of course, we currently have Marcos Alonso, Kenedy and Emerson in this position.
“But I hope that when things pass, Marc will be the option in this position.
“And I think he can play very well at the back, so it’s a little bit the profile of Azpi (Azpilicueta) on the left side. It gives us many options.
“Especially for Ben, he’s very, very ambitious, I couldn’t wait to get back to training as a team.
“Ben looks better and better, but at the same time it seems like he needs a little more time to adapt to the pace and physicality of the match itself, which is absolutely normal.
“It’s not just training and training exercises and small pitches, it’s in the end a very, very demanding league.
“And we have to take care of it, it’s our responsibility, so we can’t just play it and see what happens.
“He is impatient and we will never expect him to be fully patient, but he knows how we talk a lot about it that everything needs its time, and he will have time and we will still try to get him on the field as soon as possible. that possible.
“Because he is a huge asset to us on the left side with his speed and repetition intensity.”
Cucurella’s arrival gives Tuchel the kind of depth and full-back quality he has craved since his early days at Stamford Bridge.
Colwill’s loan to Brighton represents another boost for Chelsea, with the Seagulls having initially struggled to recruit the 19-year-old on a permanent deal.
“I am very happy, it is a great opportunity for me to join one of the best clubs in the world and I will work hard to be happy here and help the team,” said Cucurella.
Chelsea chairman and co-controller Todd Boehly praised another signing who already has Premier League experience, one of the Blues’ main goals this summer.
“Marc is an elite defender with proven Premier League quality and will further strengthen our team in the new season,” said Boehly.
“We continue to work on and off the pitch and are delighted that Marc will be a part of Chelsea’s present and future.”