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Chelsea hope to sign defensive duo in £47m deal after suspect Swansea performance

Chelsea are hoping to recover from their 2-2 opening day draw with Swansea City by signing two highly-rated young defenders, John Stones and Abdul Rahman Baba, according to the Daily Star.

The Blues are said to be hoping to bring in the pair for a combined fee of £47m (£30m for Stones and £17m for Rahman, says the Star), but it may be that they will have to pay more if they are to persuade the players’ respective teams to sell.

This rumoured desire to land two players to add to their back four could be coming in the wake of a surprising result at home to Swansea over the weekend, with the Premier League champions looking unusually suspect at the back as they were held to a 2-2 draw by the Welsh side.

Reports from the Daily Mirror last month suggested that Manchester United could also be interested in Stones, but since then, it appears that Chelsea are alone in their pursuit of the England international, who would make an ideal long-term replacement for the ageing John Terry in central defence.

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Despite playing every minute of every league game last season, Terry is now 34 and may no longer be able to play at that high level every week, with Stones showing with his performances at Goodison Park that he could be ready to make that step up and fill his compatriot’s boots at Stamford Bridge.

Meanwhile, Baba is also firmly on the club’s agenda as an alternative to Cesar Azpilicueta, despite the Spaniard’s hugely impressive form in the left-back position last season.

The 25-year-old is not a natural in that position, having started out as a right-back before making the move to the opposite side in the 2013/14 season, and it may be that manager Jose Mourinho would favour a left-sided player for that role, allowing Azpilicueta to slot back in at right-back.

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