Chelsea transfer news: Eight-year stalwart linked with shock Barcelona switch in January

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Barcelona are reportedly keen on signing Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic in January with the veteran’s contract set to expire next summer.

The Catalan giants have got their problems at right back, with Luis Enrique failing to find the solution after Dani Alves’ exit to join Juventus this past summer.

According to Mundo Deportivo, the Spanish tactician has his eyes on Ivanovic to fill the gap for the short-term, and that will involve making a move in the January transfer window to prise him away from Stamford Bridge earlier than expected.

The 32-year-old has been limited to just nine appearances in all competitions so far this season, as he has lost his place in Antonio Conte’s line-up after the Italian’s decision to switch to a 3-4-3 system.

With his playing time diminishing and no suggestion that a new deal will be offered, it looks as though the Serbian international will have to consider his options sooner rather than later as his eight-year stint with Chelsea looks to be drawing to a close.

His versatility could also be a useful attribute for Barca as they could deploy him in a central position too to cover injuries, while his game could well now be more suited to a slower pace as opposed to the fast tempo of the Premier League.

In turn, the move makes sense for various reasons for both the club and player himself, but it remains to be seen whether or not Ivanovic leaves in January or prefers to see out his contract and waits for a summer exit from Chelsea instead.

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