Chelsea's Raheem Sterling, center, celebrates after scoring the opening goal...

Chelsea's Raheem Sterling, center, celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Chelsea at the Etihad stadium in Manchester, England, Saturday, Feb. 17, 2024. Credit: AP/Dave Thompson

BRIGHTON, England — Chelsea has targeted English Premier League rival Brighton once again to strengthen its technical staff.

Brighton said on Tuesday its head of recruitment, Sam Jewell, was placed on leave after accepting a new position at Chelsea.

Jewell took up the role with Brighton in 2022 following the departure of Paul Winstanley, who also moved to Chelsea to become its co-sporting director. Other Brighton staff who have joined Chelsea in recent years include Graham Potter, who lasted six months as manager before being fired, and his assistant Bruno Salter, who was the interim manager after Potter's departure.

Chelsea also spent nearly $250 million on signing goalkeeper Robert Sanchez, defender Marc Cucurella and midfielder Moises Caicedo from Brighton inside the last two years.

Jewell, the son of former Premier League manager Paul Jewell, joined Brighton in May 2016 as the recruitment manager for the men’s under-21 side and became the emerging talent manager in March 2019.

He continued the work of Winstanley as Brighton's head of recruitment, with the club having established a strong reputation for its scouting network in Europe and South America.

“Sam has now commenced a period of gardening leave," Brighton said. "We thank him for his long service to our club.”

Brighton is three points and three spots ahead of 10th-placed Chelsea in the standings.

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