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Roma & Real Betis options for Chelsea's Pedro as forward approaches free agency

12:00 BST 03/05/2020
Pedro Chelsea 2019-20
The ex-Barca man has several options available to him as he approaches the end of his current contract at Stamford Bridge

Chelsea forward Pedro is facing a decision on his future as a host of club aims to sign him on a free transfer, with Roma and Real Betis having entered the race to secure the 32-year-old's services.

The interest around the former Barcelona man could create problems for Chelsea, who will likely not finish the Premier League season until after his contract expires on 30 June.

FIFA guidelines have recommended that players see out their obligations for the season even if they agree on a pre-contract elsewhere, but the ruling by football's governing body is not legally binding.

Pedro makes up just a small part of a list of targets Roma are looking at to bolster their forward line, while Betis feel they can offer the Spaniard a comfortable homecoming back in La Liga.

The Seville-based outfit are prepared to resist approaches from Premier League clubs for key man Nabil Fekir and add Pedro – who would likely earn a similar salary to Fekir – to their squad.

Moving to Betis would mean taking a small pay-cut, but the offer of a longer-term contract in his home country may well be enough to convince Pedro to make the switch.

The La Liga side are understood to be keen to offload Christian Tello, Javi Garcia, Aissa Mandi and Sidnei to free up funds in order to bring in Pedro.

Elsewhere, interest from New York City FC and Inter Miami could see Pedro finish up his career in Major League Soccer, while Vissel Kobe – whose squad currently includes former Barca stars Andres Iniesta, Thomas Vermaelen and Sergi Samper – also harbour an interest.

Given the coronavirus pandemic's impact on club finances, the free transfer market has become increasingly important to teams across the globe in their efforts to prepare for next season.

For Pedro's part, the player recently spoke to Spanish radio stadium El Larguero, stating: “The coronavirus situation affected everything, so at the moment we are waiting for a meeting with Chelsea.

“I know that the contract is concluding, but we have not yet sat down to discuss whether to renew and continue here or not. I’m waiting for the meeting with the club, but am also open to listening to other offers.

“The priority right now is completing my contract, then we’ll see what happens.”

On a potential return to Spain, he added:  “I don’t know, I really don’t know. I have offers from many places and I’ll evaluate what to do next. The truth is, I don’t know what’s going to happen."

The Premier League reiterated its commitment to returning to action on Friday and they will have a more decisive meeting next week to decide what measures need to be taken to see the sport come back.