7 Chelsea transfer targets for the summer window
Chelsea look set to be crowned champions this season, but it appears that work is already underway to strengthen ahead of next term and a return to the Champions League. The Guardian reports that seven players have been earmarked for possible moves to Stamford Bridge.
1. Alexis Sanchez
The unsettled Arsenal star is said to be Antonio Conte’s top transfer target. The 28-year-old is out of contract in June 2018 and talks over an extension have stalled. The Blues reportedly hope to convince him to make a controversial switch to them, but face competition from Paris Saint-Germain, Inter Milan and Juventus.
2. David Alaba
Chelsea urgently need to strengthen on the left flank, where Marcos Alonso has been almost single-handedly manning the left wing-back spot. Conte has apparently set his sights very high when it comes to adding competition for the Spaniard: he wants to sign Bayern Munich star Alaba. The Austria international, aged 24, has been on Bayern’s books since 2008 and the German champions would no doubt resist any attempt to poach him.
3. Alex Sandro
If the Blues fail in their attempt to sign Alaba, Conte wants to raid his former club Juventus to sign Alex Sandro. The Brazilian, aged 26, joined the Italian champions from Porto in 2015. As an attack-minded left-back, he would fit into the wing-back system well. He is first-choice left-back at Juve, but they would be more likely to part with him for the right price than Bayern with Alaba.
4. Virgil van Dijk
With John Terry’s time at Stamford Bridge coming to an end, centre-back is another position in which Chelsea will need to strengthen. Southampton defender Van Dijk has earned rave reviews for his performances since arriving from Celtic and has established himself as one of the Premier League’s best defenders this season. The 25-year-old Netherlands international has been touted as a target for a host of top clubs.
5. Tiemoue Bakayoko
The Monaco midfielder has been strongly linked with the Blues in recent weeks and The Guardian’s article indicates those reports are accurate. The 22-year-old is a powerful deep-lying midfielder and his arrival would call into question Nemanja Matic’s place in the squad, or at least the preferred starting XI. Manchester United, Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain are also in the running for the France international.
6. Romelu Lukaku
The report claims that first-choice striker Diego Costa is expected to leave Stamford Bridge when the transfer window opens. Former Chelsea man Romelu Lukaku, who was sold to Everton for £32m in 2014, is apparently being lined up as a replacement. The 23-year-old has 15 appearances for Chelsea to his name already, but failed to find the net once. That’s in stark contract to his 83 goals in 157 games for the Toffees.
7. Alvaro Morata
In what is probably an either/or situation with Lukaku, Real Madrid forward Morata is also under consideration as Costa’s replacement. The article suggests that the Blues would not be averse to signing the Spain international and Lukaku if the opportunity presented itself. Madrid activated a €30m buy-back clause to bring his back from Juventus last summer after two seasons in Italy.