Deal hijacked: Player ‘close’ to signing for Newcastle United seals shock move to Chelsea

Chelsea have hijacked Dujuan Richards’ proposed move to Newcastle United, according to reports late on Saturday night.

As we revealed in a January exclusive, the 17-year-old arrived on Tyneside last month for a two-week trial, linking up with our Under-21 squad in search of a professional contract.

He recently told The Chronicle he was ‘expecting’ to hear good news from club after impressing Toon coaches, but it emerged late last night that he’s now signed with Chelsea.

Fabrizio Romano claims that Newcastle were ‘close’ to signing the Jamaican, only for Chelsea director Joe Shields to play a ‘crucial’ role in negotiations to hijack his potential move to St James’ Park.

The teenage striker has signed a pre-contract agreement with the Blues and will officially arrive at Stamford Bridge when he turns 18 in November.

Richards bagged 31 goals and 19 assists for Phoenix All Stars Academy last season and attended our 1-1 draw with West Ham prior to his two-week trial on Tyneside.

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