Chelsea confirm Thibaut Courtois departure, Mateo Kovacic to join on loan

Chelsea have confirmed that Thibaut Courtois will leave the club to join European champions Real Madrid with Mateo Kovacic going the other way on loan.

Courtois, 26, had been linked with Real for some time and he had not been shy in expressing his desire to return to Spain.

At one stage it looked as if Courtois may stay for the final season of his contract but he failed to show up to training in an attempt to push through a move.

We have tonight agreed terms with Real Madrid for the transfer of Thibaut Courtois, subject to the agreement of personal terms and a medical. As part of the deal, Mateo Kovacic will join Chelsea on a season-long loan.

Chelsea and Real Madrid have tonight agreed terms for the permanent transfer of Thibaut Courtois subject to the agreement of personal terms and passing a medical.

That ploy worked with both Chelsea and Real confirming the move on Wednesday evening.

Real have confirmed that Courtois has signed a six-year contract.

The two clubs have also announced that Croatian midfielder Kovacic, 24, will spend the season on loan at Stamford Bridge.

There is no mention from either club of a option to buy in the loan arrangement.

Later on Wednesday Chelsea announced the arrival of Kepa Arrizabalaga from Athletic Bilbao on a seven-year contract for a world record fee of £71.6 million.

The 23-year-old will be available to make his debut away at Huddersfield on Saturday in the Blues’ Premier League opener.

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