Chelsea are ready to hand Pepe a way out of his contract stand-off with Real Madrid by attempting to sign him on a Bosman this summer.
The Blues are reportedly interested in bringing Pepe to the Premier League, and the Daily Mirror claims that Antonio Conte will look to hold talks with the defender in the hope of shaking hands on a pre-contract agreement to sign him in nine months' time.
Pepe's current deal at the Bernabeu expires at the end of the season but, despite his advisers discussing fresh terms with Real, the La Liga giants are only willing to extend the centre-half's contract by another 12 months.
Pepe's representatives, meanwhile, are rumoured to be holding out for a two-year extension and will look to begin chatting to other interested parties from January 1 onwards if a mutual understanding cannot be reached with Real.
Chelsea boss Conte is said to be be in the market for defensive reinforcements despite bringing David Luiz back to Stamford Bridge late in the summer transfer window. The Italian is yet to be convinced by Gary Cahill's long term future at Chelsea, while club captain John Terry's playing career is in its twilight due to age and a spate of injuries in recent seasons.
Pepe's stock is still believed to be relatively high after he helped Portgual win their first ever international trophy at Euro 2016 last summer, and would likely act as a stop gap at Chelsea while younger targets are scouted.
Pepe will consider a move to Chelsea unless he gets the two-year contract he wants from the Spanish club. (Source - Daily Mirror)
Chelsea have been linked heavily with a move for AC Milan's 21-year-old centre back Alessio Romagnoli, but the Serie A outfit have placed a reported Â£49m price tag on their young star's head in a bid to ward off interest.
Pepe has been a Real Madrid player since a Â£25m move from Porto in July 2007, and has amassed over 320 appearances during his time in Spain's capital.
The 81-times capped international has featured five times for the Champions League holders this term, and has bagged 10 winners' medals with the club throughout his nine-year career.
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