Chelsea have opened talks with Real Madrid over a permanent move for Mateo Kovacic, according to reports.
Croatia star Kovacic signed for Real in 2015 from Inter Milan but has struggled to establish himself as a first-team regular.
He signed a season-long loan deal with the Blues in the summer and has impressed under Maurizio Sarri, making 20 appearances in all competitions.
Sarri is said to be keen for Kovacic to sign a permanent deal at Stamford Bridge and Chelsea have contacted Real Madrid to discuss a move, according to the Evening Standard.
Kovacic admitted he wanted to leave La Liga giants Real in the summer to play more football and appears to be relishing his role in west London.
Speaking earlier in the season, the Croatian midfielder spoke of his joy at joining Chelsea.
"I’m really happy at Chelsea," he said. "The city is amazing, the fans are great, the stadium, everything is nice, so I could imagine myself here."
"After two years of struggling in Madrid, playing and then not playing, it was difficult. You don’t have the confidence, you don’t try the things you know."
"This was my decision to go. Chelsea came, I spoke with the coach and the club. It was definitely just Chelsea for me. I wanted to come here and I am happy that it happened."