Marc Cucurella has completed his big-money switch from Brighton to Chelsea in a blow to Manchester City.
The Citizens were keen to sign the Spanish defender but Thomas Tuchel’s Blues swooped in and pipped their title rivals with a bid that could rise to £65million.
After completing his switch, Cucurella said: “I’m really happy. It’s a big opportunity for me to join one of the best clubs in the world and I’m going to work hard to be happy here and help the team.”
New Chelsea chairman Todd Boehly was delighted to get a move over the line and tipped the former Seagulls star to make an instant impact.
He beamed: “Marc is an elite defender of proven Premier League quality and he further strengthens our squad going into the new season.
“We continue to work on and off the pitch, and we’re delighted Marc will be a part of the present and future at Chelsea.”
Cucurella, 24, had been a star man on the South Coast since arriving from Getafe 12 months ago, winning the club’s Player of the Season award in his first campaign.
And he will now compete against Ben Chilwell for a berth on Chelsea’s left flank, with Marcos Alonso tipped to move to Barcelona.
In announcing their capture of the one-cap Spaniard, the Blues gave fans a glimpse of their new away shirt, which is yet to be officially revealed, on Twitter.
Raheem Sterling and Kalidou Koulibaly have already joined the West Londoners this summer but Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Chistensen left for Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively on free transfers, and Romelu Lukaku has been shipped back to Inter Milan on loan.
Aston Villa prodigy Carney Chukwuemeka has also arrived after the England youth international pushed for a Villa Park exit.
Chelsea whizkid Levi Colwill, 19, has moved in the opposite direction on loan and Brighton boss Graham Potter was delighted with his new addition.
He said: “Levi has enormous potential and has already shown his ability last season in the Championship and with England at various age group levels up to Under-21s.
“I am really looking forward to working with him on the training pitch, and in matches over the course of the season.
“He plays mostly at centre-back, but has also played on the left as a full-back, and he is a player who is comfortable on the ball.”