The links Chelsea have had to a variety of central midfielders now take a much more realistic turn as it is all but confirmed that Oscar will be leaving to join Shanghai in the Chinese Super League.
Chelsea are now in serious need of a replacement, and have a large amount of money with which to buy him.
One name that has been suggested repeatedly is Marcelo Brozovic, the Croatian midfielder who is a key part of Inter Milan’s first team. Until now prising him away from the Italian club might have been too tall an order, but now with the extra cash boost afforded by Oscar’s exit Chelsea can really go for their man.
Unlike Oscar, Brozovic has the toughness and experience to play in the central midfield roles in Antonio Conte’s 343, replacing N’Golo Kante or Nemanja Matic when a more dynamic and attacking option is needed. Cesc Fabregas is currently doing an exceptional job in that role, but sadly just no longer has the legs to play the role just an Antonio Conte wants it done. The younger and more explosive Brozovic looks to be the perfect blend of legs and brain, and it would be no surprise to see Chelsea’s links with the Croatian renewed once Oscar’s departure is confirmed.