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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May, 27, 2006

Feyenoord striker Kalou set to sign for Chelsea

AMSTERDAM, May 27 (Reuters) - Feyenoord striker Salomon Kalou is holding talks with Chelsea, the Dutch news agency ANP reported on Saturday.

'Anticipating the possible departure, we have given Salomon an authorisation to talk with Chelsea,' Feyenoord marketing director Chris Woerts told ANP.

'We have been in talks with this club over Kalou for some time. It's going in the right direction but he still hasn't reached an agreement yet ... Chelsea sees in Kalou an exceptional talent.'

The Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf said 20-year-old Kalou, who is the younger brother of Ivory Coast captain Bonaventure Kalou, had been in England on Friday to wrap up the deal.

'The player reached a principle agreement with the club,' the paper said without quoting a source. 'The expectations are that today or tomorrow the clubs will agree on a four or five-year contract.'

Dutch media have previously reported that Valencia and Chelsea have shown a strong interest in the striker.

Earlier this week, Kalou told the Dutch weekly magazine Sportweek he did not expect to play in the Netherlands much longer as he wanted to move on with his career. He has said he prefers a transfer to England or Spain.

Kalou also told Sportweek he had given up his quest for Dutch citizenship and wanted to play for the Ivory Coast after the World Cup finals.

Supported by Netherlands coach Marco van Basten and the country's former playmaker Johan Cruyff, Kalou applied for Dutch citizenship but was denied by Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk.

She told parliament in March that Kalou did not fulfil the criteria for fast-track citizenship and would have to retake a Dutch language and culture test.

Earlier this month, a civil court in Rotterdam rejected Kalou's appeal against Verdonk's decision.

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