Chelsea could reportedly be back in business this January, at least as far as being able to compete in the transfer market goes.
According to the Daily Mirror, the Blues seem confident they could see their transfer ban lifted early, and they’ve already begun contacting agents to make their intent known.
It’s not yet clear precisely how much Chelsea would have to spend or who they would target, but on their day the west London giants can be as competitive as anyone when it comes to entering bidding wars for top talent.
They were smart to swoop for Christian Pulisic last January, even if he didn’t move to Stamford Bridge until the summer, and in recent times they’ve also done well to win the race for big names like N’Golo Kante, Jorginho and Kepa Arrizabalaga.
After being unable to make signings this summer, whilst selling star player Eden Hazard to Real Madrid, CFC should now have some money saved up to improve this slightly depleted squad that’s made a slow start under Frank Lampard.
Here’s a look at five players we think Chelsea should be going after if they’re given permission this winter…
A top attacking player with flair, pace, skill and an eye for goal, Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha makes perfect sense as a potential Hazard replacement for Chelsea.
The Ivory Coast international has already shown what he can do in the Premier League and would surely not struggle to settle at Stamford Bridge, while he’s also conveniently already based in London.
The Sun have linked Zaha as being an £80million target for Chelsea if they get their ban lifted, and that seems a pretty sensible use of their money to fix a problem area.
Even without factoring in Hazard’s exit, Pedro and Willian aren’t getting any younger and haven’t been at their best so far this season, with Zaha surely an upgrade and ideal long-term purchase.
Given that Chelsea could do not only with replacing Hazard, but Pedro and Willian too, it could be that they’d do well to also enter the running for Juventus forward Paulo Dybala.
The Argentine’s future has been up in the air for some time, with the Mail noting that he was linked with a £73m move to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer that didn’t work out.
If Dybala remains out of the first-team picture in Turin, Chelsea should be in there like a flash to try to snap up another top creative talent who would provide a similar threat to that of Hazard.
A fine young centre-back who’s often been linked with big moves to the Premier League, Benfica’s Ruben Dias looks a player who could do a job for Chelsea.
The Blues sold David Luiz to Arsenal this summer without time to sign a replacement, while Gary Cahill’s departure has also been a bit of a blow, leaving the unconvincing Andreas Christensen and Kurt Zouma playing far too many games.
Dias would surely be an upgrade and seems like a player ready to make the step up from Portuguese football to a bigger club and a more competitive league.