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Kalas 'poised for Cologne loan deal'

Kalas made two appearances for Chelsea last season.

Cologne are set to sign Chelsea centre-back Tomas Kalas on a two-year loan deal, according to reports in the German media.

The move comes as Cologne prepare to strengthen their squad after winning promotion to the top flight in May.

Having already signed Kaiserslautern attacker Simon Zoller, 22, they are now looking to add defensive recruits -- and Czech defender Kalas, 21, is high on the list, according to kicker.

Kalas, who made two Chelsea appearances last season, has previously spent two seasons on loan at Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem.

"Nothing is signed yet, but I'd like to think that he'll join us," Cologne sporting director Joerg Schmadtke told kicker. Bild, meanwhile, has suggested that a loan deal would be likely to last for one year rather than two.

Elsewhere, Germany under-20 midfielder Yannick Gerhardt has announced that he will stay at Cologne despite strong interest from Benfica.

Writing on his Facebook page, he said: "I have made my decision now and will continue my sporting future at 1.FC Cologne. It would have been careless not to listen to the offer from a European top club like Benfica."

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