Neymar privately urged Thiago Silva to leave Paris Saint-Germain and join Chelsea this summer, according to reports.
Chelsea signed the Brazil international on a free transfer from the French champions last month, with Frank Lampard keen to add experience to his leaky defence.
The 35-year-old has spent eight seasons with PSG but The Telegraph report that a source close to the player claims the defender was ‘immediately’ attracted by the prospect of joining Chelsea.
The report also claims that during PSG’s Champions League preparations in Lisbon last month, Thiago Silva consulted Neymar and the Brazilian forward ‘enthusiastically’ told his compatriot to make the move to Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea’s hierarchy, including the club’s owner Roman Abramovich, were understood to be unanimous in their decision to sign Thiago Silva, who has the option to extend his one-year contract for a second season.
PSG, however, made a late attempt to convince their captain to stay but the Brazilian had already decided his future.
The Telegraph also reports that a source at Chelsea has described Thiago Silva’s role as an ‘unofficial assistant manager on the pitch’.
It’s also understood that the Brazilian centre-back will work closely with Lampard’s coaching staff.
‘We had a lot of offers, but Chelsea are one of the world’s top 10 clubs
‘Physically, Thiago can play for another five or six years at the highest level. He is an athlete who looks after himself.
‘He doesn’t drink, he doesn’t smoke, he doesn’t party. His life is home – work, work – home.’