Txiki Begiristain is a step closer to moving to Chelsea.

The Mail on Sunday says with Frank Arnesen resigning as football director, the stage is set for ex-Barcelona sports chief Begiristain to step in as his replacement.

Sources close to Blues owner Roman Abramovich have suggested Begiristain, 46, as a replacement for Arnesen.

Chelsea are keen to emulate the production line of world-class players raised through the Barca academy, such as Leo Messi, Xavi and Andres Iniesta. Ironically, Begiristain had little to do with Barca's youth team development but his stock has risen on the back of the success the team had during his seven-year stint as a director at the Nou Camp.

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