Chelsea has surfaced as a leading contender to sign Lucy Bronze following Barcelona’s announcement that the England right-back will depart when her contract ends on Sunday.

Bronze is expected to attract interest from clubs worldwide, but sources indicate that discussions have been held about a potential move to Chelsea. If the deal goes through, it would be one of the most notable transfers of the summer. The Women’s Super League champions declined to comment when contacted by the Guardian.

Bronze, who has earned 123 caps for England, was instrumental in the team’s victory at the 2022 Women’s Euros and their runner-up finish at last year’s World Cup. Last month, she became the first English player to win five European Cups, aiding Barcelona in securing their second consecutive Women’s Champions League title.

She also claimed the trophy three times with Lyon, where the new Chelsea manager Sonia Bompastor was previously affiliated, although Bompastor was not the manager during Bronze’s tenure there.

Bronze has won the Women’s Super League title twice with Liverpool, in 2013 and 2014, and helped Manchester City secure their only WSL title in 2016. She was named FIFA Best Women’s Footballer of the Year in 2020.

The 32-year-old departs Barcelona after clinching seven out of a possible eight major trophies. In a statement, the Spanish champions said, “This is the legacy left to FC Barcelona by one of the best defenders in the history of women’s football.

“Lucy Bronze will not renew the contract that tied her to the club until June 30 of the current season. Lucy’s legacy at Barça is completed with a total of seven trophies. The club wishes Lucy Bronze the best of luck and success in her new stage, both personally and professionally.”