Chelsea stalwart linked with shock move to London rivals to end eight-year spell with Blues

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Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic is reportedly a summer transfer target for Crystal Palace who have joined the race to sign him.

The Serbian veteran will see his contract with Chelsea expire at the end of the season, and having fallen out of the team under Antonio Conte, it remains to be seen as to whether or not they offer him a renewal.

What the uncertainty has already caused is a reported transfer battle for his signature, with the Croydon Advertiser reporting that Palace are ready to offer him a chance to remain in London.

Ivanovic has spent eight years in the English capital having moved to Stamford Bridge from Lokomotiv Moscow in 2008 and may well favour an opportunity to keep his family where they are.

However, as mentioned in the report, the likes of AC Milan and Marseille have also been linked with moves and so it will potentially be a tough decision for the 32-year-old to make.

It’s claimed that Palace and West Ham United could even make their move in January in a cut-price deal, and provided that Ivanovic remains on the fringes under Conte, the Italian tactician will likely be open to listening to offers to get some sort of return on him instead of losing him for nothing in the summer.

Conte has switched to a 3-4-3 system in recent weeks which has resulted in his side winning four consecutive games and keeping four clean sheets in the Premier League.

With Cesar Azpilicueta, David Luiz and Gary Cahill settling into the back three and with Victor Moses impressing as a right-wing back, perhaps Ivanovic’s days at Stamford Bridge are now numbered.

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