Are Chelsea’s Centre-Back’s The Key To Unlocking Romelu Lukaku ?

It is definitely safe to say that Romelu Lukaku’s time at Chelsea has been underwhelming at best and not only his goal scoring has been sub-par but it is his general play that is the most worrying. Everyone has seen the graphic about Lukaku having just 7 touches vs Crystal Palace and it is alarming for him as an individual player and the team itself. Countless times you will see our attackers look up directly at Lukaku when he is in a position to receive it and just turn out and play sideways or backwards. If you focus solely on Lukaku throughout a match, he does often raise his hand indicating he wants the ball and will usually follow this with a slight run in behind before the player with the ball does the aforementioned turn out and play elsewhere. This then results in the classic Lukaku sulk that usually sees him just standing offside for at least a few seconds as he trots back towards the last defender.

In recent weeks our centre-backs have begun following this trend of not playing the ball to Lukaku when he is a favourable option. Below is a kind of example that I speak of. If you don’t go to games you unfortunately don’t have the ability to see most of the actions Lukaku does but trust me, he does actually make smart runs and clearly indicates when he wants the ball.

Image Source : The Athletic

Obviously I have no inkling as to what passes and patterns of play that our centre-backs are stipulated to play but it really looks like they avoid playing passes to our front players religiously. This snapshot was taken in the 7th minute and I do understand the famous tactic of keep it simple for the first 10 or so. However, in a stalemate game like this one as it was for so long, you have to make a few risks here and there. Rudiger is a man that lives by calculated risks, the infamous Rudiger run that opens up passing lanes and space and his long shots from outside the box are synonymous with his play style. I would love for Rudiger to try more chipped balls in behind the defence and passes into Lukaku’s feet as he attempts to hold it up.

One of the main issues with our centre-backs playing passes in behind is the low-block style that nearly every team implements when we play them. Chelsea’s main nemesis this year has been teams we should wipe the floor with, implementing a low-block that stifles our attack. If I was an opposition manager setting up in a low-block 4-4-2 or 5-4-1 would be an easy option and many managers in the League have thought this way also. The low-block system limits the space in behind and makes the game more centrally. Meaning no space in behind for runs and more players centrally in the way between Rudiger, Silva or Christensen getting the ball into the feet of Lukaku.

Image Source : The Athletic

The picture above is a perfect example of where a calculated risk should be taken by Rudiger. Toni is certainly skilled enough to attempt this pass and pull it off and I feel that more risks taken like this will greatly increase our chances to score.

In games like the Crystal Palace one, the time the centre-backs have on the ball is heavily evident and I would love to see the statistics on how much time our centre-backs are actually in possession of the ball. A few more risks sprinkled into the style of Rudiger and Christensen would be ideal.

Havertz and Lukaku utilised together upfront is an option that has become available in the last few games for Tuchel and having a bigger man to make runs off of could elevate Havertz to an even further level. Havertz is the first choice number 9 for Chelsea at the moment and in the game vs Burnley we could see a few more longer range passes coming into play. Burnley played with a higher line than usual and especially in the first half looked to go toe-to-toe with Chelsea. Lukaku could have had a field day in behind that defence but has a long way to go before solidifying his place over an in-form Kai Havertz.

Written by Frankie

4-2-2-2: a formation we could see more of?

Thomas Tuchel surprised us all on Wednesday evening in the 2-0 victory against Tottenham in the first leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final at Stamford Bridge. Having been previously reluctant to veer too far from his tried and tested back-three system, Tuchel lined up with a back-four for (almost) the first time in his reign as Chelsea boss. A Kai Havertz opener followed by an unfortunate Ben Davies own goal saw Chelsea cruise to victory, in a game that really could have ended four or five goals to nil. Antonio Conte had no answer to Tuchel’s setup, one which may well be a glimpse of the future for Chelsea fans. 

Hakim Ziyech was the key man for Chelsea’s system on Wednesday, filling in at right-wing-back as the team maintained its back-three shape off the ball. He pushed high up the field when Chelsea pressed Tottenham’s block and tucked in as the right-sided number 10 once Chelsea regained possession. This is very similar to how Christian Pulisic was used when Chelsea played Leeds at Elland Road last season, an indicator that the setup had been in Tuchel’s mind long before Wednesday’s game. Mason Mount, meanwhile, dropped in to form a midfield-three out of possession, and pushed forward into the left-sided 10 position when Chelsea had the ball, as illustrated below. Essentially; 3-5-2 off the ball, 4-2-2-2 on it. This meant that our defensive solidity was maintained, whilst, in attack, Tottenham’s midfield two was overwhelmed by the combination of Chelsea’s four midfielders and Havertz, who dropped deep to help link play. A masterstroke from Tuchel. 

The evolution of Tuchel’s hybrid setup (Source: Twitter – @AliRadhi)

We should, however, consider the fact that Conte and Spurs will not have been prepared for this, setting up to deal with the back-three formation Chelsea had used in every game so far this season rather than the new-look back-four. With time to mount an adequate game plan, teams might use more central midfielders, or target the right-hand-side of Chelsea’s defence with overloads in order to expose Ziyech’s defensive weaknesses, for instance. For this reason, I think Chelsea fans may have to wait until next season to see this setup used more consistently. As links to West Ham’s Declan Rice and AS Monaco’s Aurélien Tchouaméni persist, it is looking ever more likely that Chelsea will sign an athletic defensive midfielder in the coming summer transfer window. This would allow Tuchel to use a similar system, but without the necessity for either of the number 10s to fill in at wing-back, as the defensive cover provided by a physical midfield signing would prevent Chelsea from being exposed on the counter.

Given that the 4-2-2-2 seems a realistic possibility for Chelsea next season, it’s worth considering some potential winners and losers that would come out of this formation change. 


Romelu Lukaku – The best spell in Lukaku’s career came at Inter Milan under Antonio Conte, where the Belgian rose from being a ridiculed flop at Manchester United to being widely accepted as one of the world’s best strikers. Paired with Lautaro Martinez, he was extremely influential on the right side of the front two, using his speed and power to dominate the right channel. Much of this season, he has been used as a lone striker, a static reference point, constantly with his back to goal. We didn’t need Romelu to tell us for us to realise this clearly doesn’t suit him, as many began to claim, “we play better without him”. Using him this way is reminiscent of his time at Manchester United, where José Mourinho struggled to maximise his potential. As seen in the first half against Spurs, the 4-2-2-2 allows Lukaku to return to his favoured right channel, where he is more able to impact the game, by both hovering on the last line of defence and finding the runs of his strike partner.

Havertz’ movement in behind for his goal v Spurs (Source: Twitter – @PremLeaguePanel)

Kai Havertz – Though Havertz also favours this right channel, he is very comfortable playing on the left of the front two, something he proved in Wednesday night’s game. Since Tuchel was appointed, it has become clear that Havertz should be played high up the pitch, and this split striker formation allows Chelsea to make the most of his intelligent movement in the box. The small matter of dealing with Lukaku means that defences leave more space for him to drift into, just as we saw with his early goal against Spurs. Equally, when he’s not the lone striker there is less of a need for him to be a presence on the last line of the defence, meaning he can use his ability to drop deep and link play. This constitutes a new dynamic in Chelsea’s build up, making the most of his understanding with the likes of Mason Mount, amongst others.

Timo Werner – Werner is yet another example of a player who is less comfortable when played as a lone striker. Much like Kai, Timo’s quality movement is most effective when he is joined by a strike-partner, preventing him from being marked out the game. Like Lukaku, his most successful days came playing in a front two overseas, off the left of Yussuf Poulsen at RB Leipzig, scoring 34 goals in all competitions in the 2019-20 season. Having either been played either too wide, deep, or central so far in his Chelsea career, the 4-2-2-2 could be the key to him rediscovering his goal-scoring form.

Timo Werner celebrates a hat-trick against Borussia Mönchengladbach (Source: Trivela)

Christian Pulisic – Despite the recent equaliser against Liverpool, Pulisic’s time under Tuchel so far can only be described as inconsistent, bordering on disappointing. The 3-4-3 used by the Chelsea manager has often seen Pulisic stuck dribbling in between the lines, exposing his lack of creativity, and leaving him too far from goal. Playing in the front two of the 4-2-2-2 would favour his goal-scoring instincts and movement in the box, without leaving him as isolated as he has been when used as a lone striker in recent games. 

Mason Mount – Although Mason has had an excellent year, finishing in the top 20 of the 2021 Ballon d’Or and playing a pivotal role in Chelsea’s Champions League success, it’s important to remember he has not been playing in his favoured position. His skillset is perfect for the 8 role and, like Pulisic, playing on either side of the front 3 leaves him with too much responsibility to create between the lines. Playing a 4-2-2-2 wouldn’t have him as an 8, but it does allow him to occupy deeper areas and play a greater role in the build-up, whilst still being able to arrive late in the box and finish off Chelsea attacks. He would not be the primary creator in this system.  

Mason Mount with the Chunkz Frankenstein celebration v Liverpool (Source: Goal)

Hakim Ziyech – Ziyech is another on Chelsea’s list of forwards who haven’t thrived in Tuchel’s 3-4-3. He is a player who likes to remain wide on the right side of the pitch, finding the runs of those inside the box with in-swinging crosses from his infamous left foot. Reece James’s ability to come infield would facilitate Ziyech remaining wide, their connection something to look out for if Ziyech remains at Stamford Bridge next season. With an extra striker in the box, the chances are Ziyech’s assist count would benefit. The same can be said for Callum Hudson-Odoi, who has displayed a fantastic understanding with both Kai Havertz and Romelu Lukaku so far in his Chelsea career. 


Jorginho – Jorginho is a player who divides opinion. Tuchel’s back-three system has seen the holding midfielder’s strengths maximised and his weaknesses masked, so much so that he managed a top 3 finish in the 2021 Ballon d’Or. The combination of the three centre backs and two holding midfielders means that, in the first phase of the build-up, a passing option is always available, allowing him to circulate possession and orchestrate passing moves out from the back. This structure also protects him on the counter, rarely leaving him isolated in transition. Given his inability to cover ground quickly, a move to a more expansive system could leave Jorginho out of sorts, especially with the potential arrival of a new defensive midfielder. 

Antonio Rüdiger – Also benefitting from Tuchel’s arrival, Rüdiger’s aggressive style of defending is very well suited to playing in a back-three. The German’s form has earnt him much praise, now seen as one of Europe’s best defenders. His raw speed means he is comfortable defending out wide, knowing the central areas are covered by the other centre backs. Toni’s drives into the opposition half have become a fixture in Tuchel’s Chelsea team, often igniting both the crowd and the team during tough periods of games. Unfortunately, a move to a back-four would restrict his ability to charge out from the back, there being less defensive cover for him in this shape. It’s still yet to be seen whether he could adapt his game to suit the 4-2-2-2, but it’s certainly a formation that plays less to his strengths. 

Jorginho and Rüdiger (Source: Twitter – @Mohxmmad)

Cesar Azpilicueta – After last year’s Champions League success, Azpilicueta is now regarded amongst many Chelsea fans as a club legend. His loyalty to the club is unquestionable, but so are the signs of his impending decline. He was given a new lease of life by Tuchel, returning to the same RCB position which saw him widely accepted as one of the league’s best defenders during Chelsea’s 2016-17 title-winning campaign under Conte. On the right of a back-four, Reece James would be the clear first-choice option, leaving Dave with a seat on the bench. 

Thiago Silva – Thiago Silva has been nothing short of a world class signing for Chelsea. Joining on a free transfer from PSG, he has defied the odds by performing as a top 3 CB in the league at the ripe old age of 37. Despite proving under Frank Lampard that he is perfectly capable in a back-four, the older he gets the less confident you’d feel leaving him with less protection. As his speed declines, his inability to defend the wide areas would be a worry for Tuchel. 

Tuchel and Thiago Silva (Source: Sportbuzz)

Of course, a formation change would impact the whole squad in various ways, but these are the players who stood out to me as the ones who would either benefit or suffer most from a move to the 4-2-2-2. 

Notably, every winner is under the age of 30, and every loser, apart from Rudiger, is over the age of 30. Make of that what you will, but it seems that with every day that passes, the squad becomes more suited to a back-four system. To me, the catalyst needed for Tuchel to consider leaving the back-three behind will be the signing of an athletic defensive midfielder. Regardless, Tuchel’s semi-final line up was just one of many examples of his impressive tactical flexibility, having made many in-game tweaks throughout his tenure, most valuably on route to the Champions League final. This adaptability should leave Chelsea fans with no doubts as to the capabilities of the German, as he continues to show he has what it takes to be at Stamford Bridge for years to come. 

Written by Tom Driver

Romelu Lukaku and Chelsea FC–past, present, future

Chelsea FC have broken their transfer record to re-sign Romelu Lukaku from Inter Milan. Let’s go down memory lane to revisit his history with the club, define what he will bring in the coming season, and how his game can potentially evolve as he gets older


Romelu Lukaku joined Chelsea from Anderlecht for £10m on August 2011 but he was the 5th striker in the squad. Chelsea had just signed Fernando Torres for a record breaking £50m six months ago, there was the talisman but ageing Didier Drogba, squad player Saloman Kalou and fellow youngster Daniel Sturridge. Lukaku was part of the Belgian revolution led by Michael Emenalo and joined around the same time as Kevin De Bruyne and a year earlier than the Hazard brothers. He was a huge fan of Drogba and the club.

Figure 1: Romelu Lukaku signs for Chelsea, Courstesy Getty Images

2011/12 was largely spent on the bench or with the reserves and wasn’t even in the Champions league squad of 25. Chelsea didn’t do too bad though winning the Champions league title though they came 6th in the league.

For the 2012/13 season Chelsea knew they were going to play a lot of games with their involvement in the Club World Cup in addition to the usual commitments. Drogba and Kalou left as well. However, Lukaku was sanctioned to leave on loan to West Brom. Chelsea only had two strikers in Torres and the untested Sturridge. The 25-man squad included Lucas Piazon (18), Nathan Ake (17), and Florent Malouda who were not expected to play. The club ended up playing more than 65 games that season.

Lukaku at that moment was not a complete striker. He had a weak right foot, could not run with the ball or take players on. He was primarily a poacher, getting into good positions and finishing off moves. He scored 17 goals which was more than all of Chelsea’s strikers.

Jose Mourinho returned to the club at the start of the 2013 season and there was lots of excitement. Lukaku was expected to stay and compete with Torres. He played in pre-season friendlies, and even the Super Cup against Bayern Munich where he missed the decisive penalty in the shootout. The club were chasing Wayne Rooney all summer and ended up with an ageing Samuel Etoo. Out of no where, the last day of the window Lukaku pushed for a loan to Everton which Mourinho granted.

Figure 2: Lukaku with Mourinho in 2013, Courtesy Getty Images

Chelsea ended trophyless that season. Mourinho made a comment after the 1st leg of the Quarter Final game with PSG about his non-existent forward line while Lukaku scored 15 goals in the league even though he was injured for a while.

2014 was supposed to be Lukaku’s year, right? All three of Chelsea’s forwards were let go. Torres loaned to AC Milan, Etoo released and Demba Ba sold to Besiktas. But no Lukaku. Chelsea recruited three new forwards. Diego Costa joined from Atletico Madrid for £32m, Drogba rejoined for free and Loic Remy was bought as a 3rd choice forward. Lukaku tired of going out on loan joined Everton on a permanent transfer for £28m.

In the following years, he further developed his game. He scored more regularly with both feet, ran better with the ball, included more assists in his game. He also had that famous goal against Chelsea in an FA Cup game where he dribbled past two players and lashed a powerful strike across the goal to dump his old club out of the competition.

Chelsea didn’t do too bad. Diego Costa led the front line along with Hazard to two titles in three years and a Carling cup. In hindsight, Chelsea got Diego Costa for Lukaku + £4m. The same Lukaku who had never scored a goal for the club.

There was a telling moment in the corridors of Goodison park three years later in 2017 though where Chelsea won 3-0 thanks to an amazing Pedro goal. Michael Emenalo and Lukaku were having a conversation at the end of the game. It was common knowledge that Diego Costa was agitating to leave and Lukaku had developed enough to potentially lead Chelsea to new heights.

Chelsea, Antonio Conte and Michael Emenalo courted Lukaku in the summer of 2017, and everything seemed done for a £75m move back to his former club. At the 11th hour though, Manchester United offered Everton more money and Rooney for the player. Paul Pogba and Lukaku were seen together at Los Angeles as he went AWOL on Chelsea and joined the Red Devils.

Chelsea bought Morata, then Giroud, then Higuain, then Tammy Abraham took over. Giroud and Tammy were relative successes but Chelsea who have always played with a traditional robust No.9 have missed something up front ever since Costa left. They ended up winning the 2021 Champions league final playing with mobile false forwards in Werner and Havertz.

Figure 3: Chelsea won the Champions league in 2021, Courtesy Getty Images

Lukaku scored goals at Manchester United but was never deemed a success there. He moved to Inter Milan where he took his all-round game to another level becoming a leader in the team leading them to their first Serie A in 10 years ending Juventus’ dominance.


Welcome to 2021 when Chelsea fans salivating about Erling Haaland all summer got Romelu Lukaku. Chelsea have paid top dollar for him as well shattering their previous transfer record with Kepa. So, what can we expect from him this season?

Goals, goals, more goals and some assists. There is so much creative talent in the forward line of Chelsea and Lukaku will be finishing all of those moves. It doesn’t stop there though. His build up play has improved now, and he is going to help players like Werner, Pulisic, and Havertz score more as well.

He is the big center forward that Chelsea have craved but let’s not pigeonhole him into just that. Famously in 2018 against Brazil, he switched to a wider forward role helping Belgium win the quarter finals with De Bruyne playing false 9. In one specific moment, he ran past Fernandinho like he didn’t exist before assisting De Bruyne showing various facets to his game.

Figure 4: Lukaku against Brazil, Courtesy Getty images

The present Lukaku is a poacher. He can head in crosses from Chilwell and Reece James, play cute inter plays with the technically gifted forward players, and run the channels if Chelsea play on the counter against teams like Manchester City. Chelsea will be expected to contest for the title in 2021-2022 and Lukaku will be expected to score 20-30 goals.


Lukaku is at the peak of his game but in two to three years age will start creeping up on him. He already has ten years of football in him, and his speed will reduce. He will not have any resale value and Chelsea are not buying him with the hope of selling him for more later.

Expect Lukaku’s game to adapt in a few years more akin to Olivier Giroud has during his time at Chelsea. The pace to run behind may go away, but the awareness in the box to get into the right positions, the strength to win headers and finally the ability to involve others will still be there. In the future, Lukaku may not be a 20-goal striker, but he can still be a 10-goal impact substitute who comes on against tiring defenses to get late goals.

It could all go down hill though. He could hide in big games as he is accused of doing, not score against the big teams or in the big occasions, miss big chances and be a liability in a year. With transfers, there is always that risk. It’s a risk Chelsea are willing to take though with the potential reward of getting the final piece of the Tuchel puzzle. Yes, Chelsea just won the Champions league but that’s despite not having a proper center forward.

Chelsea and Lukaku have a long history and have crossed paths many times. Here is to hope for a bright future as well. Welcome home Rom.

12th August 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Romelu Lukaku

Lukaku has rejoined Chelsea after 7 years on a five year contract which sees the Belgian stay at Stamford Bridge until 2026.

Two bids for Lukaku were rejected by Inter, one of which included Marcos Alonso going the other way.

Marina Granovskia flew to the south of France to combine work and a bit of holiday time to try and seal the deal.

Inter hoped for more than £100m and Chelsea hoped to use players in a part-exchange for Lukaku. Neither happened and the two clubs agreed on a fee of £97.5m.

Once image rights and bonuses are taken into account, Lukaku’s salary will work out from around £325,000-a-week to £450,000-a-week, depending on just what is taken into account. (The Athletic)

Image Source : Chelsea FC

Tammy Abraham

Roma’s general manager Thiago Pinto has flown to London to meet Tammy Abraham and his entourage to try and lure the striker to Italy.

Tammy Abraham is waiting for any offer from Arsenal as they remain his preference.

Roma want to snap up Abraham quickly as they want to provide Mourinho with the striker of his choice to get ready for the new season.

The financial agreement between Roma and Chelsea has been done for days and now it is up to the players final decision.

Thiago Pinto’s intentions are to stay in London until he receives a definitive answer from the Englishman.

Roma have an alternative with the name of Alexandre Lacazette.

Roma deciding to pursue Lacazette could see the opportunity for Tammy to move to North London. (DiMarzio)

Southampton rival Arsenal and West Ham for Chelsea FC striker Tammy Abraham  | Evening Standard
Image Source : Evening Standard

Davide Zappacosta

There is definitely contact between Atalanta and Chelsea surrounding Zappacosta. (Alfredo Pedulla)

Chelsea news: Davide Zappacosta confident of ousting Victor Moses from  first XI | Metro News
Image Source : Metro

Jules Kounde

Chelsea have asked Sevilla to negotiate a deal for Jules Kounde which would seem them avoid paying his entire release clause.

Kounde’s release clause sits at around £68m and Chelsea are not willing to pay this full amount of as of now. (90min)

Man Utd transfer target Jules Kounde backed to play for 'great club' by  Sevilla team-mate | Football | Sport |
Image Source : Daily Express

9th August 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Romelu Lukaku

Romelu Lukaku has just completed main part of his medical tests as new Chelsea player today morning in Milan.

Lukaku may be in the country now or be arriving later tonight.

Official announcement and unveiling could be coming as soon as tomorrow. (Fabrizio Romano)

Romelu Lukaku won’t be involved in the Super Cup game against Villarreal. (Paul Brown)

Lukaku is now in Monaco with his agent Pastorello for some ‘technical’ stuff. If there are no other changes, he’ll be in London in the next hours to sign his contract.

There’s no issue or problem with Chelsea – Romelu will be announced as a Chelsea player soon.

Armando Broja

Armando Broja joins Southampton on loan from Chelsea, medical completed today – total agreement reached after five year contract extension signed.

Southampton overtook Udinese in the race for Broja and have secured him for the upcoming season. (Fabrizio Romano)

Chelsea may feel that Broja is better suited for English football and the opportunity to go to Southampton was too sweet to refuse for the club and Broja himself.

Broja will join former Blues Tino Livramento and Dynel Simeu at the Saints.

Broja was granted the loan move because of Lukaku’s imminent arrival from Inter Milan.

Tammy Abraham

Arsenal are ready for Alexandre Lacazette to leave the club and this will mean they have to bring in another striker and Abraham is near the top of that list.

Chelsea are demanding £40m for the 23-year-old and don’t have much interest in loaning Abraham out. (Mirror)

Jose Mourinho officially has asked for Tammy Abraham.

AS Roma are in need of a replacmenet for Edin Dzeko and in the last few hours Mourinho has asked for Tammy Abraham.

Roma consider the £40m asking price a bit excessive and will try and lower it by asking for an initial loan deal with the option to permanently buy him later.

Roma will face a tough challenge from Arsenal who are known as Tammy’s preference. (GFIN)

Roma are close tonight to securing Tammy Abraham.

Roma have offered Chelsea €5m to take Tammy Abraham on loan + option to buy later down the line.

Chelsea would prefer to sell abroad than strengthen a Premier League and London rival. (SkySports)

Tammy Abraham agreeing to go to Roma is the only detail that needs to be finalised and he will join Roma on loan for the upcoming season. (DiMarzio)

Sasa Kalajdzic

It is understood Chelsea have also shown an interest in the Stuttgart striker Sasa Kalajdzic, although any move for the Austrian would depend on the departure of Tammy Abraham, who is wanted by Arsenal. (Guardian)

Kenedy , Matt Miazga , Davide Zappacosta , Danny Drinkwater , Tiemoue Bakayoko and Ross Barkley

These 6 Chelsea players have been put on the transfer list by the club. (Nizaar Kinsella)

Trevoh Chalobah

Valencia have emerged as the frontrunners to sign Chelsea’s Trevoh Chalobah on a season-long loan after he excelled in pre-season.

Tuchel is adamant to not sell the 22-year-old and wants him playing regular first team football instead of being a backup for Chelsea. (Nizaar Kinsella)

It is thought that Valencia will be open to playing Chalobah at centre back as this is where Tuchel sees his future at.

Ike Ugbo

Genk are still in talks with Chelsea over signing Ugbo for around £5m but still have not come to an agreement as of yet. (Nizaar Kinsella)

Dujon Sterling

It is likely that Dujon Sterling renews his contract and then be sent on loan. (Nizaar Kinsella)

Jules Kounde

Chelsea will pursue a deal for Kounde after the Lukaku deal is complete.

Sevilla have rejected Chelsea including the likes of Emerson and Kenedy into a deal. (Nizaar Kinsella)

Written by Frankie

8th August 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Romelu Lukaku

Paperwork not being signed is the cause for the delay with the Lukaku deal. (Kristof Terreur)

Lukaku’s medical will be done tomorrow. (DiMarzio)

Armando Broja

Chelsea are in advanced talks with Southampton over a season-long loan move for Armando Broja. Discussions have been held over the last couple of days.

Southampton feel they need a replacement for Danny Ings. (Adam Newson)

Tammy Abraham

Abraham remains the main target for Atalanta.

Price tag is around €40m. (Angelo Mangiante)

Roma are interested in signing Tammy Abraham.

Dzeko is rumoured to join Inter Milan which leaves Roma needing a new striker.

Mourinho reportedly wants to sign a young striker.

Arsenal are also slightly interested in the 23-year-old. (DiMarzio)

Davide Zappacosta

Fiorentina are interested in signing Zappacosta but must sell Pol Lirola first before pursuing a move. (DiMarzio)

Trevoh Chalobah

Trevoh Chalobah is set to leave Chelsea on loan before the transfer window closes despite impressing Thomas Tuchel during pre-season.

The number of central defenders currently on Chelsea’s books is why Chalobah has been told he can leave Stamford Bridge on loan

Clubs across Europe, including in Ligue 1, La Liga and the Premier League, have registered interest.

Chelsea are keen on loaning him to a club that will use him as a centre back. (Adam Newson)

Lionel Messi

PSG became anxious on Saturday that European champions Chelsea would make a late approach to the player’s family and create a bidding war.

Senior sources at new European champions Chelsea denied making an approach. (The Athletic)

Written by Frankie

7th August 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Romelu Lukaku

The Romelu Lukaku to Chelsea deal is completed.

Chelsea will pay Inter €115m (£97.5m) for Lukaku and no Chelsea players will be going to Inter.

Lukaku will sign a five year contract and get €12m net + add-ons per year. (Fabrizio Romano)

Lukaku will be the highest earner at Stamford Bridge as he will receive about £195,000 a week after tax. (The Athletic)

Lukaku will undergo a medical in Belgium on Sunday and will travel to London that night or early Monday morning to complete £97.5m move.

The striker didn’t plan to exit Inter this summer but Inter’s financial crisis made it necessary. (David Ornstein)

Image Source : 433

Tammy Abraham

Atalanta board have a meeting scheduled in London with Chelsea in the next 48 hours to ask for Tammy Abraham as main target. Price tag around €40m.

Arsenal and West Ham interested also.

Atalanta will bid for Tammy if Inter try to buy Duvan Zapata as Lukaku replacement. (Fabrizio Romano)

Tammy is not in a rush and he will not be forced out of the club.

Arsenal appeal to him the most out of three clubs interested as of now (mind may change after talks with Atalanta). (Dan McCarthy)

What Aston Villa's £30m transfer decision means for Arsenal in £40m Tammy  Abraham chase -
Image Source : Football LDN

Declan Rice

Declan Rice has accepted that he will be staying at West Ham this season after their £90m valuation blocked a potential move to a Champions League club. (Daily Mail)

Declan Rice stance on joining Chelsea or Man Utd after returning to West  Ham training | Football | Sport |
Image Source : Daily Express

Jules Kounde

After Lukaku, Chelsea will pursue more signings and will look to find a deal for Kounde. The Frenchman has always been the favourite option as centre back but a fee has not been agreed yet. (Fabrizio Romano)

Sevilla are already looking for a new centre back which increases the hope that Kounde will be a Chelsea player before the end of the window. (Fabrizio Romano)

Jules Kounde: Age, height, boots, girlfriend, stats, salary |
Image Source : FootballTransfers

N’Golo Kante and Jorginho

After Lukaku deal is done, new contracts for Kante and Jorginho will be discussed after summer. (Fabrizio Romano)

Man Utd must 'pay whatever for Sancho' and find Jorginho-Kante axis
Image Source : Football365

Written by Frankie

Podcast: Lubacku, Kounde, Pre-Season & Super Cup!

NOW WE ARE TALKING! | Chelsea 2-0 Dortmund Review The Chelsea Spot Podcast

  1. NOW WE ARE TALKING! | Chelsea 2-0 Dortmund Review
  2. Scared, Potter?

In another episode of The Chelsea Spot Podcast, Orlando (Host – @0rland1nho), Paree (Owner – @CFCParee) & Dan (Admin- @danbarkzr) discuss the season ahead. Talking about where Chelsea are going to finish and who could be our best player throughout the season, to a possible training ground bustup…

Click your preferred streaming platform –



Make sure to check us out on all our social media platforms, including our website, Twitter, Instagram, Spotify, ITunes, Amazon Music, Google and Youtube.

Just how sensible have Chelsea been this silly season?

As we enter the final month of the 2021 summer transfer window, Chelsea are finally beginning to make some moves with the pursuit to bring Romelu Lukaku back to Stamford Bridge looking increasingly more likely by the day. However, as silly season comes into full effect, just how sensible is Chelsea’s recent transfer activity?

As is the case with most high profile signings in contemporary football, the numbers involved are staggering. The widely reported €120m (give or take a few free unwanted players thrown in for good measure) would be a British transfer record, topping the recent £100m acquisition of Manchester City, Jack Grealish, by a mere £1-2m. Yet, at a point in time in which elite goal-scoring 9’s are at a premium, the signing of Lukaku, who put up 30 goals in 44 games as he spearheaded Inter Milan’s first title win in 11 years, was always going to be an expensive one.

With such a high transfer fee comes undeniable risk, at the age of 28, Chelsea is signing a striker in his prime with the returns on the investment being solely reliant on him being a blistering success in front of goal. Despite Chelsea being no strangers to expensive acquisitions, previous recent high profile signings of players like Werner and Havertz were made with the reassurances that whilst an immediate impact was expected, they were also signing players who would develop and contribute to the club over a long period of time with an asset value that could well increase. With Lukaku, there is no such safety net of retained value, Chelsea will need the Belgian to put up strong numbers for the majority of his contract to justify the expenditure. Additionally, the pressure will be on Chelsea’s young core to ensure their development continues at an exponential rate in order to maximise the peak of Lukaku’s powers.

A lot has been made of the lack of resell value, with comparisons being made to the acquisition of Didier Drogba, aged 26 for £24m, however, in truth, the most comparable signing of this profile is that of Fernando Torres in 2011. The Spaniard, despite rumours of injuries already taking hold, was signed for a record-breaking fee at the age of 27 with the hopes that he could push Carlo Ancelotti’s side to the next level. Despite a few unforgettable moments, El Nino’s time at the club was largely underwhelming, with the club struggling to move the player on when it became apparent to all parties that the desired outcome was likely never going to be achieved. This not only cost the club a lot of money but also restricted opportunities to implement alternative solutions, including a newly acquired Romelu Lukaku from Anderlecht. Such an experience will have undoubtedly played a part in the club’s cautiousness to pursue a transfer of this profile up until now, an entire decade later.

In isolation, Lukaku the player is rightly a reason to be excited. A versatile, determined and effective leader of the attack, Lukaku will likely provide the clinical instinct and mentality that an all too frequent toothless Chelsea attack has lacked. However, what in a single moment in time is a very exciting prospect perhaps masks a much more worrying underlying narrative of how the club have got to this point. It’s hard to find a player who represents the ugly side of Chelsea’s mismanagement of assets more than Lukaku himself. Signed as a promising talent in the Summer 2011 window, Lukaku’s time at the Blues was largely spent on loan as he struggled to secure a spot ahead of the aforementioned Torres, in addition to the likes of Demba Ba, Samuel Eto’o and Loic Remy before departing the club permanently in 2014 to Everton. 

The club were interested in bringing the Belgian back to Stamford Bridge in 2017 however the board, largely unconvinced by the reported transfer and agent fees, ultimately lost out to Manchester United and instead focused their attention to Alvaro Morata (although the less said about that, the better). In fact, it appears to have taken Lukaku finally playing under Antonio Conte, the exact manager they didn’t provide Lukaku to in 2017, to convince the club to part with even more money than they would have had to pay 4 years earlier. 

Whilst admittedly, it’s easy to call out these mistakes with the power of hindsight, there’s still plenty of signs to suggest that the club are arguably making the same mistakes this summer, partly to fund this deal. Before the excitement surrounding the opening of Roman’s wallet, the feeling around the club was one of frustration as a large number of highly promising Chelsea youngsters departed for a host of reasons, primarily centred around a lack of belief in first-team opportunities. Despite the inclusion of various clauses that may one day see those players return to the club, there should be no greater example for persevering with suspected elite talent as you never know, it might just save you £100m one day.

The sale of such assets has largely been inevitable when combined with the fact that the club is unable to shift a large number of ageing players with depreciating value, both on the pitch and financially. This pre-season specifically acting as a worrying representation of the ghosts of transfer windows past as the likes of Danny Drinkwater and Davide Zappacosta took to the field as the club struggle to find suitors. The positive for fans is that such transfers weren’t repeated last summer and show no sign of taking place this summer either (despite a brief flirt with Adama Traore), yet the presence of so many players, combined with a look at the talent that has departed, should act as a startling reminder of the damage that can be done if the club doesn’t correctly manage their assets. Ultimately, continued selling of your 19 to 23-year-old Lukaku’s will ultimately prevent you from signing your 28-year-old Lukaku’s eventually.

It’s not all doom and gloom, of course. Chelsea, as European champions, are on the brink of adding one of the best strikers in world football to their squad. A board that has been frequently guilty of failing to strengthen from a position of power, appear to have learned from previous lessons and wish to take the club to the next level. In Tuchel, we have a manager that deserves to be backed and whilst it’s undoubtedly a risk, if the club insists on releasing Tammy Abraham this summer then it’s hard to argue that the club hasn’t gone all-in on the best option available. It just so happens that Lukaku might not only be Chelsea’s most expensive signing, but also their most expensive lesson.

6th August 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Romelu Lukaku

Inter Milan will not accept Chelsea players as part of the Lukaku deal.

It is thought Inter will accept a bid of around £97m + add-ons for Lukaku. (DiMarzio)

The idea for the Lukaku deal is to get a breakthrough this weekend and seal the deal before Monday. (Matt Law)

Chelsea would prefer to finish the Lukaku transfer before Monday as we would like to register Lukaku for the Super Cup final.

A third bid for Lukaku will be submitted shortly (this weekend). Thought to be around £97m. (Sky Sports)

Davide Zappacosta

Zappacosta was initially going to be used in a bid of around £85m + Zappacosta for Lukaku but reports of Inter preferring cash are thought to be true.

Zappacosta has been linked with a few clubs and his future is still undecided.

Tiemoue Bakayoko

AC Milan feel they have a good pathway to signing Bakayoko as the player himself would like a move there.

Bakayoko is seen as the ‘ideal profile’ for the Italians, but they have other priorities first, needing an attacking midfielder first.

Once that’s done, however, they could return for the Chelsea man, although beware of Napoli as ‘stalling could be risky’.

Relations between AC Milan and Chelsea are at an all time high as the deals surrounding Tomori and Giroud were easy and seamless. (SportWitness)

Written by Frankie

Tinkering Tuchel: How Chelsea’s Tactics Could Vary In The 2021-22 Season

When appointed Chelsea manager in January, much was made of the tactical versatility of Thomas Tuchel’s previous sides. Whilst in the Paris Saint-Germain hot seat, Tuchel tinkered with more than 10 different systems, ranging from an attacking 4-2-3-1 to a more defensively solid 3-5-2. Already during pre-season we have seen the Blues experiment with several formations, venturing away from the 3-4-3 variants that proved so reliable in the second half of the 2020-21 campaign. With the expected addition of Romelu Lukaku to our already stacked array of attacking assets, questions are being raised as to how the champions of Europe will line up come the start of the season. 

The tried and tested 3-4-3

Having just won the Champions League with this system, there is no immediate desperation to deviate from the 3-4-3. Made popular by Antonio Conte in 2016, Tuchel also saw this shape as his primary tactic, achieving great success with it. The fluidity of the attackers that occupied the front three positions last season allowed for a number of different options within these attacking areas: two strikers and one number 10, two wingers and a striker, or two number 10’s behind a main striker.  

The beauty of this shape is that it offers you the defensive structure necessary while still pressurising the opposition and fielding enough attacking threat to cause problems. With the imminent arrival of Lukaku, we could either opt to partner him with either Timo Werner or Kai Havertz, both of whom offer different strengths, or Tuchel may choose to play two supporting players in behind the Belgian, where the likes of Mason Mount and Hakim Ziyech come into the conversation. Alternatively, there is also the option to deploy two more natural wingers, with Christian Pulisic and Callum Hudson-Odoi providing more of a threat in one-on-one situations down the flanks.  

An obvious drawback with this set-up is that the inclusion of an extra centre back takes away the potential for a different attacking option, that may allow for another creative midfielder. Chelsea are yet to score more than two goals in a game under Tuchel and as some of the smaller sides in the division are more likely to try and frustrate us, having five defenders on the pitch at the expense of another creative player made be detrimental.  

The high-press 4-2-2-2 

One of the more uncommon and unorthodox formations that Thomas Tuchel has made use of in the past is the 4-2-2-2. Using Neymar and Angel Di Maria as roaming playmakers at PSG, this tactic focussed on creating chances for the prolific Kylian Mbappe and Edinson Cavani, while the midfield two required tenacity and dynamism, with the likes of Idrissa Gueye and Ander Herrera in the squad. This system would see the Blues switch to a back four for the first time under Tuchel, thus placing more defensive responsibility upon the clubs’ centre backs.  

If this particular shape is to be implemented at Stamford Bridge this season, then there is perhaps no greater midfield pair than Mateo Kovacic and N’Golo Kante. Our Croatian is arguably one of the best around in terms of ball retention, offering a bridge between defence and attack in the transition. Kante’s role within the team is undisputed, with the Frenchman’s’ dominating performances at the back end of last season receiving shouts for a potential Ballon d’Or win. 

In terms of the two attacking midfielders in this team, in order to most accurately replicate the PSG variant under Tuchel, Mount and Ziyech would probably be the two providing the killer passes for the strikers. One potential downside to this would be the lack of pace and direct running at defenders, with the two more likely to operate as inside forwards. While the full backs, probably Reece James and Ben Chilwell, would go some way to providing width to the attack, there would be added pressure on the pair to have the athleticism to get back quickly if required, due to the removal of a centre back. While this system would introduce more of a creative spark, the balance and width of the side may be unsettled, making it more of a risk than a guaranteed success.  

4-3-3, 4-2-3-1 and how they would work in tandem 

Last deployed by Frank Lampard, the 4-3-3 has increased in popularity and success in recent years, with the last two Premier League winning sides favouring the system. While Liverpool’s midfield three consisted of two hard working, box-to-box midfielders in front of the holding Fabinho, Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City have often lined up with two creative players in front of Fernandinho or Rodri, with former Chelsea player Kevin De Bruyne conducting much of the play. However, the Blues boss Tuchel has shown characteristics of both Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp in the past, insisting on a determined but crisp attacking style, that blends the ‘gegenpress’ with positional play.  

In a Chelsea context, the holding midfielder would likely be Jorginho, who has enjoyed a dramatic upturn in form since the arrival of our German head coach. Fresh off the back of a starring role in Italy’s Euro 2020 win, the 29-year-old will be keen to continue his impressive run by dictating the play at Stamford Bridge once again. It goes without saying that Kante will retain his place in midfield, but where this system differs from those at Anfield and the Etihad Stadium is the third midfielder. After such an impressive season last year, you would have to believe that Mason Mount is a shoo-in to be the third man, blurring the lines between a 4-3-3 and a 4-2-3-1. We saw Mount perform a similar role in the opening games at the European Championships for England, in that he will drop deep to receive the ball, before driving forward and helping to create chances, or feed the ball out wide. I believe this set-up favours more natural wingers, which would see the likes of Werner and Havertz miss out. 

And that may be the biggest downfall to this system should it be called upon at the Bridge. Despite not hitting the ground running last term, our German duo are two of the most likely sources of goals in the whole squad, both boasting impressive records in the Bundesliga before moving to London. This line up may place too much pressure on Lukaku (should he join) to provide the majority of our goals, with the likes of Pulisic, Mount and Hudson-Odoi not yet showing their prolific goal scoring potential. If this tactic is to thrive, these three would have to increase their goal contributions significantly.  

Written by Luke Feather

3rd August 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Romelu Lukaku

Chelsea have made a formal bid for Lukaku that consists of €100m guaranteed and Marcos Alonso also. Inter have rejected the offer as they deem Lukaku as ‘untouchable’ and they want to keep him.

Inter expect Chelsea to try again for Lukaku soon. (Fabrizio Romano)

If Chelsea bid up to €120m for Lukaku, Inter will find it hard to say no. (DiMarzio)

Romelu Lukaku’s agent is pushing for a move to Chelsea, he says yes to the move, very hot situation, Inter wont accept unless Lukaku says yes also. (Alfredo Pedulla)

Romelu Lukaku To Decide Future Based On Where He Thinks He Can Win More Trophies.

the lack of any incoming offers for Lautaro Martinez, Inter may be forced to reluctantly part ways with Romelu Lukaku, should a cash offer north of €120 million arrive from Chelsea.

Regardless, no final decision has been made by the player as of time of publication since he is very happy at Inter and the Blues have so far had two offers of cash plus a player as part payment rejected, as Inter are only interested in cash, in any event. (SempreInter)

€15 million per season in wages has reportedly been rejected by Romelu Lukaku as he wants to remain at Inter for now. (SempreInter)

Jules Kounde

Chelsea are yet to reach an agreement over a fee for the France centre-back and are likely to need to sell a defender to make the transfer happen. (Guardian)

Declan Rice

West Ham’s valuation of £100m for Declan Rice has put Chelsea and Man United off signing the Englishman this summer. (The Telegraph)

Signing Declan Rice next year makes a lot more sense for Chelsea and the price will presumably be lower next year as he has already rejected two contract offers from the Hammers.

Armando Broja

Udinese have asked Chelsea to take Broja on loan until June 2022.

Talks between the Italian club and Chelsea are ongoing and with a new striker potentially coming in, it would make a lot of sense to loan Broja out again. (Fabrizio Romano)

Written by Frankie

2nd August 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Tino Livramento

Livramento has today signed for Southampton in a five-year deal.

The 18-year-old had offers from top Premier League clubs and Bundesliga clubs but the pathway that Ralph Hasenhüttl and the Saints have set for Livramento persuaded him to join them.

Livramento will join Dynel Simeu at Southampton and will presumably be joining the senior squad and be battling for first team minutes.

Chelsea will receive £5m and have a sell-on clause and the buy-back clause inserted into the contract means Chelsea can potentially buy back the Englishman for around £25m.

Tino Livramento poses in his new Southampton shirt.
Image Source : Southampton


Kenedy was offered to Sevilla to try and seal the Jules Kounde deal however Sevilla just want straight cash for the Frenchman. (Nizaar Kinsella)

Kenedy played in Chelsea U23’s game vs Woking on the weekened, seemingly informing the player that he is no longer needed at the club.

Chelsea's preference for Kenedy is European loan instead of Flamengo switch  - Sports Illustrated Chelsea FC News, Analysis and More
Image Source : Sports Illustrated

Romelu Lukaku

Lukaku has now jumped back up to the top of the list regarding strikers for Chelsea this summer. (Telegraph)

Chelsea have made two bids already for the 28-year-old Lukaku this summer.

We shouldn’t be surprised if Chelsea make a third offer for Lukaku soon. (The Athletic)

Just as of 22:35 (U.K.), the latest info from Fabrizio Romano states that Inter have rejected Chelsea’s latest bid of €100m including Marcos Alonso for the Belgian forward. Di Marzio states that another offer could come from Chelsea and that it’s up to Lukaku if he wants to make the move.

Kurt Zouma , Tammy Abraham , Marcos Alonso , Callum Hudson-Odoi , Ruben Loftus-Cheek

Chelsea are willing to listen to offers regarding these 5 players. (Telegraph)

Erling Haaland

As Dortmund refuse to change their willingness to negotiate with Chelsea over Haaland, Chelsea have begun to look into Romelu Lukaku as first choice target. (Telegraph)

Jules Kounde

The move for Kounde could then be part of a ‘three-way negotiation’ which would see Davinson Sanchez exchange Tottenham for Sevilla, after Kurt Zouma has potentially signed for Spurs. (SportWitness)

Ilaix Moriba 

Barcelona fear that Chelsea is the reason as to why talks with Ilaix Moriba aren’t progressing as planned. The English side would be in a position to offer the player up to three times the salary that Barça are able to offer him.

Barcelona offered the player a €2m wage+bonuses based on performances, but the player wants €3m. (sport)

Chelsea are said to love the midfielder, and are ‘willing to sign him now, or wait until he’s free in June’. (SportWitness)

Barcelona have set the deadline for Moriba to sign a new deal as Sunday. (Mundo Deportivo)

Ilaix Moriba Reports racist insults in his social networks
Image Source : FC Barcelona Noticias

Written by Frankie

1st August 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Tino Livramento

Chelsea’s young player of the year is expected to sign for Southampton on a permanent deal in the next few days.

Livramento will sign a five-year contract with Southampton and Chelsea will receive £5m for the Englishman. (DailyMail)

Brighton were expected to sign Livramento but Matt Crocker who knows Tino Livramento from his time at England have provided Tino and his representatives a clear plan for his pathway. (TheSecretScout)

Leipzig, AC Milan, Aston Villa and Brighton were all interested in Livramento but the plan set out by Southampton to get Livramento to the first team has persuaded him to join them.

There is a buy-back clause and sell on fee included in the deal. Brighton did not want to include the buy-back clause which led to the breakdown in negotiations.

The buy-back clause is rumoured to be around the £25m mark.

Concern for Chelsea as Academy POTY Livramento targeted by
Image Source : 101 Great Goals

Kurt Zouma

Zouma is West Ham’s primary target and it is thought the Frenchman is very open to a move to the London Stadium.

The difficulty lies in the valuation – with Chelsea thought to want in the region of £25m – and Zouma’s wages.

If a deal cannot be struck, the 26-year-old is happy to remain at Chelsea where he has a contract that runs until 2023. (SkySports)

Hakim Ziyech

Hakim Ziyech, who could leave Chelsea towards the end of this month, is perhaps the most interesting profile. AC Milan like the player a lot and will certainly make an attempt, but it’s not known if the English side will accept a loan. (SempreMilan)

The Wizard of west London: Ziyech is already working his magic at Chelsea |
Image Source : Goal

Eduardo Camavinga

Eduardo Camavinga is in no hurry to decide on his next club.

To buy Camavinga this summer it would cost €35m/€40m.

Camavinga will be a free agent next summer. (Fabrizio Romano)

Robert Lewandowski

For this summer, there is no chance to sign Robert Lewandowski for Chelsea. (Fabrizio Romano)

Robert Lewandowski - Player Profile - Football - Eurosport UK
Image Source : Eurosport

Romelu Lukaku

Inter define Romelu Lukaku as non-transferable and untouchable, another very complicated affair. (Fabrizio Romano)

Erling Haaland

Chelsea’s dream remains Erling Haaland, but from Borussia Dortmund the club’s version is clear: there is no offer on the table, not even an official approach. It will take madness to sell Haaland, not even €150million would be accepted. (Fabrizio Romano)

Ruben Loftus-Cheek

Chelsea are looking into sending Ruben Loftus-Cheek to Germany’s Bundesliga to get his career back on track. There is ‘plenty of interest’ from the Premier League including Southampton. (Alan Nixon)

Loftus-Cheek: Chelsea Academy in safe hands with Bath
Image Source : Premier League

Emerson Palmieri

Lyon are interested in signing Italy international Emerson Palmieri, having made an enquiry for the Chelsea man. (GFFN)

Written by Frankie

24th July 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Antoine Griezmann

Chelsea could become an option for Antoine Griezmann this summer as their pursuit of an elite level striker becomes more difficult. (SportWitness)

Marcos Alonso

Alonso is reportedly pushing to leave Chelsea for a new Serie A experience with Inter Milan.

Chelsea are reportedly asking for €15-20m for Alonso, whereas Inter would prefer a loan with an option to buy.

Alonso is apparently pushing Chelsea to let him leave. (Football Italia)

Timo Werner

Chelsea are ‘open’ to selling Timo Werner this summer as the Stamford Bridge club have reignited their interest in Romelu Lukaku.

Chelsea have continued their interest in Lukaku due to Inter Milan’s financial troubles. (The Mirror)

Romelu Lukaku

Inter Milan have set their asking price amid rumours of Lukaku leaving Inter this summer.

The price set by Inter is €120m.

The price is this high as Inter and Simone Inzaghi see Lukaku leading the line for Milan this summer. (Tuttosport)

Written by Frankie

20th July 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Emerson Palmieri

Napoli remain in talks with Emerson and Chelsea. Chelsea reportedly want €20m for the Italian. (Via CorSport)

Emerson does in fact want a return to Italy and thus could make the transfer happen quicker than if he was reluctant to leave West London.

Marcus Bettinelli

Chelsea are interested in former Fulham goalkeeper to join Chelsea on a free transfer. (The Telegraph)

His contract has run out this summer and Chelsea want Bettinelli to become their third-choice goalkeeper.

Lewis Bate

Leeds are hopeful of completing the signing of Lewis Bate before the end of the week.

Leeds and Chelsea have come to an agreement regarding a fee for the 18-year-old midfielder.

Bate will conduct a medical at Leeds on Wednesday and talks regarding personal terms are ongoing and are expected to be no issue. (The Athletic)

Ike Ugbo

Ugbo and Genk have agreed on personal terms but the club are unwilling to meet Chelsea’s demands of £5m.

The striker only has one year left on his deal at Stamford Bridge and this is the main reason Genk are cautious to fork out the money.

Chelsea hope to complete the deal and come to a compromise by the end of this week. (The Athletic)

We presume Chelsea will take a bit off of the fee as Chelsea are seriously attempting to raise funds this summer.Callum Hudson-Odoi

Hudson-Odoi is part of Tuchel’s plans for the upcoming season and will not be going on loan or involved in any swap deals. (The Athletic)

Sasa Kalajdzic

Tuchel has been following 6″7 Sasa Kalajdzic for a long time and wants to focus on the striker if Lukaku and Haaland deals cannot be completed.

Kalajdzic will only be approached/considered if Tammy Abraham is sold this summer. (Ekrem Konur)

Tammy Abraham

Tammy Abraham wants to leave Chelsea and join West Ham, but they can’t afford his £40m asking price. (Dean Jones)

Arsenal are currently not in advanced talks for Tammy Abraham. They are informed on his situation as they like him – but it’s not an ‘advanced deal’ with Chelsea yet. Chelsea are aware of Arsenal interest but Arsenal haven’t placed a bid as of today. (Fabrizio Romano)

Thierno Ballo

Ballo could be off on loan later in the transfer window.

Rapid Vienna, Sturm Graz, Mainz and Arminia Bielefeld all interested in taking the 19-year-old on loan. (Goal)

Romelu Lukaku

Former Chelsea player Romelu Lukaku, 28, remains the top target and sources in Italy say the lines of communication between the Blues, Inter Milan and the player are ‘hot’. (The Sun)

Davide Zappacosta

Zappaocsta is still a target for Inter Milan this summer and Chelsea are asking for £10.3m for the right back. (CorSport)

Written by Frankie

15th July 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Marc Guehi

At around 12pm today, an exclusive and unexpected report was released by The Athletic regarding promising centre back Marc Guehi.

The report said that Crystal Palace are close to completing the permanent signing of highly-rated Chelsea defender Marc Guehi on a five-year contract, with the England Under-21 international having a medical today. This news seemingly came out of nowhere and shocked many Chelsea fans with the news that it is a permanent deal and not a loan.

This source continued to claim that “the offer was too good to refuse”. The reported fee is around £15m-£20m however Crystal Palace and Chelsea would prefer to keep the fee ‘under wraps’.

Chelsea have managed to negotiate a sell-on clause and matching rights on a future move.

Guehi attracted serious attention from other Premier League clubs and the Bundesliga but many of these sides had a preference of a loan with an option to buy, whereas Palace were ready to splash the cash outright on the Englishman.

Southampton, Brentford, Norwich, West Ham and Newcastle, Borussia Monchengladbach, Stuttgart, Bayer Leverkusen were other potential destinations listed for Guehi.

Olivier Giroud

Fabrizio Romano has confirmed that Giroud is now an offical AC Milan player. The paperwork is signed and his medical will be tomorrow. Official announcement pending, probably tomorrow or on the weekend if medical is successful. His contract is until 2023 with the Rossoneri.

Tammy Abraham

According to The Telegraph, Tammy Abraham has attracted interest from Arsenal. Abraham has also been made available to Inter Milan and Tottenham Hotspur, which suggests Romelu Lukaku and Harry Kane are still on Chelsea’s radar.

Chelsea reportedly value Abraham at £40m and would like to offload the 23-year-old before purchasing a big-money signing.

Arsenal are likely to need to sell players to get near Chelsea’s asking price. Our rivals from North London would be open to offers for Alexandre Lacazette as his contract is due to expire next summer.

West Ham cannot afford the £40m asking price and Leicester (who were also linked) have signed Patson Daka instead of pursuing a deal for Abraham.

Erling Haaland

Two conflicting reports have come out today regarding Erling Haaland.

Firstly, Sky Sports in Germany suggested that the Blues offered Tammy Abraham or Callum Hudson-Odoi in part-exchange for Haaland. However, sources close to Hudson-Odoi have claimed he will not be part of a deal for Haaland.

Fabrizio Romano tweeted just one hour later to dispute these claims and say that “Borussia Dortmund have not received any official bid yet for Haaland. BVB know about Chelsea interest, their position is clear: if a “crazy” bid won’t arrive, he’ll stay”.

This completely contradicts earlier reports and leaves many people to wonder what is going on behind the scenes between the two clubs.

It’s blatant to say that if we won’t sign Haaland this summer, we will never see him in a Chelsea shirt.

Simon Stone (BBC Sport) has been told “no official bid for Erling Haaland from Chelsea but even if they did, they would be wasting their time as BVB has no interest in selling”.

The talks between Chelsea and BVB are informal and no proper bid has been sent over yet regarding Haaland.

Due to Chelsea already looking to offer players to BVB we can assume a big money bid will be incoming soon.

Romelu Lukaku

Lukaku’s agent has come out today and stated that “There’s absolutely no problem with Inter. Romelu is on holiday”. Inter Milan consider Lukaku ‘untouchable’ and with the sale of Hakimi, they have absolutely no reason to sell one of their most prized assets.

Alfonso Pedraza

Will Faulks (via Chelsea-News) has exclusively reported today that Chelsea have “serious interest” in the Villarreal wing back Alfonso Pedraza. With the sale of Emerson and Alonso reported to occur this summer, Chelsea would be in the market for a suitable backup at left back.

Pedraza has a similar playing style to Chilwell which means he would seamlessly step in when Chilwell is injured or in cup games.

Pedraza is 25 and according to the report, Villarreal will not demand a large fee for the Spaniard. It is likely he will receive a large pay rise upon his move to Stamford Bridge and will be aware of his playing status.

Pedraza has been linked with Chelsea before and it is certain the board and/or Tuchel believe he is capable of backing up Ben Chilwell.

Davide Zappacosta

Zappacosta is considered a target for Inter Milan. Their first choice for the right back spot is Hector Bellerin but Zappacosta is seen as their second choice. SempreInter have been reporting that Zappacosta has stayed a target of theirs for a while.

Inter are fans of his Serie A performances in loan spells with Roma and Genoa and are looking to bring him in on a permanent deal.

Conor Gallagher

Crystal Palace are also looking to secure a loan signing of Conor Gallagher this summer according to The Athletic.

With a lot of Palace players contracts running out this summer, they are looking to strengthen the midfield with high quality loan signings.

Callum Hudson-Odoi

TheSecretScout has today confirmed that Hudson-Odoi will be staying an England player despite rumours of him switching his nation to Ghana.

Written by Frankie

The Striker Problem At Chelsea This Summer

The striker position at Chelsea will be undergoing monumental changes over the coming summer. Tammy Abraham has been linked with moves away ever since his playing time diminished at the end of the season and Giroud is constantly being approached by AC Milan about a potential deal. If the two of these strikers were to leave, it would leave the striker position relatively empty heading into the 2021/22 season. The Haaland news has dried up as of late as Achraf Hakimi has become the main focus for the Blues. With the lack of world class strikers available on the market this summer and the Haaland deal looking more and more unlikely by the day, Chelsea could be in big trouble heading into a new season with not much back up for Havertz and Werner.

The departure of Giroud and Abraham will leave a big hole in Chelsea fans hearts and in the Chelsea squad. With Giroud about to leave for a small fee (or no fee at all) and the Mirror reporting that Aston Villa are ready to place a bid for Tammy Abraham, we will be left with just a few months to secure one or two replacements for the striker position. Havertz has filled in expertly at the striker position, but a looming possibility of a formation change for Tuchel’s Blues questions whether Havertz will stay as an option up front. Kai could be moved to an attacking midfield role, worryingly leaving just Timo Werner as the only striker option in the Chelsea squad.

The lack of options at striker for Chelsea for the coming season worries me a lot. If Werner cannot discover his goal scoring form of his Lepizig days, we could be in for a low scoring season as a team. The only factor Tuchel can be criticised for so far around his tenure at Chelsea is the lack of goals being scored. Even with around four choices for the striker position, the goals were very low and taking away two of our options from the number nine spot can’t help. A solid backup striker is a staple in a team contending for the League title and if things don’t go our way this summer we could be stuck with very little options. Having different options at striker also helps if there is injury trouble throughout the campaign.

In an era where Chelsea are constantly linked with every striker under the sun during the summer transfer window, this time there is only a handful of names that have come up in regards to suitable striking options. The names that Chelsea fans have become used to hearing about in the last month or so are Erling Haaland, Romelu Lukaku and Harry Kane.

A few months ago, the optimism for securing at least one of these world class strikers was through the roof and now with each passing day these three become even harder to sign. Lukaku is completely out the picture as he has confirmed his pleasure to stay at Inter Milan. Harry Kane looks destined for Manchester City and the Chelsea links for him have completely dried up since earlier this month. Somehow, one of the hottest prospects in football with the likes of Real Madrid chasing after him seems to be the most likely forward that we could sign this summer. An astronomical fee will be required to secure Haaland, with various trusted sources claiming it could be upwards of £150m to bring the Norwegian in. Apparently the fee could be the least of our worries, as the wage demands are deemed as the biggest issue in the way of a deal happening. No other solid reports of strikers are surfacing from trusted sources and it looks like a world class striker coming to Stamford Bridge this summer is becoming more and more unlikely.

Euro 2020 also effects our chances of signing a striker as negotiations will be harder to complete whilst players are focused on the competition. Any striker at the Euros will be difficult to sign as players will want to be involved in their future. The Euros end on Sunday 11th July and the Premier League transfer window closes on Tuesday August 31st at 11pm. 51 Days to bring in a replacement striker. The Kai Havertz saga last summer felt like it took forever and I can only imagine the time needed to sort out a deal for Haaland who will be at least double his fee. If Chelsea cannot acquire any of the three names mentioned, maybe it is time to look somewhere else, the loan army.

The loan army does contain suitable Premier League strikers and the pre-season period will be extremely important for Thomas Tuchel deciding who to keep in the first team setup. The three loan army members of note that occupy the striker position are Michy Batshuayi, Ike Ugbo and Armando Broja. Chelsea are reportedly working hard to sell Ugbo and Batshuayi, however Broja is currently in talks for a new contract. Leeds were in hot pursuit of Michy but the £15m asking price from the Blues has seen them cool down their chase for the Belgian. The asking price set for Batshuayi seems to be too high for most clubs at the moment, however reports are claiming Bielsa is interested in the 27-year-old as he managed him at Marseille in 2014. Ugbo is coming off of an exceptional loan spell at Cercle Brugge where he bagged 16 goals and three teams are supposedly interested in signing the Englishman. Watford, Frankfurt and Genk are currently battling it out for Ike and it looks like Chelsea are ready to let him go for a small fee. With two of the three loan army strikers gone, it leaves the 19-year-old Albanian Armando Broja.

Sky have reported that Thomas Tuchel is considering including Broja in his Premier League squad for the upcoming season. With good reason comes this thought from Tuchel as Broja helped Vitesse achieving a fourth place finish in the Eredivisie and a KNVB Cup Final visit. The 19-year-old scored 11 goals and got 3 assists in 34 games. These numbers for a first loan are quite good and the standard of the Eredivisie is higher than a lot of people realise. Frank Lampard first introduced Broja to senior football against Everton on the 8th March 2020 and Tuchel has seemingly continued the interest in the Albanian forward. Bringing Broja into the Premier League squad would likely cause a lot of contrasting views from different sections of supporters. Some fans may feel that Broja is too raw at this moment in time and needs another loan to really earn his place in the squad. However, some other types of fans may think that it is worth utilising Broja and his skills rather than splashing the outrageous amounts of cash needed to bring in the likes of Haaland and Kane. My thoughts are that Tuchel should be able to assess Broja in friendlies and in training to judge if he is ready for English football at the highest level. Armando could cause a lot of teams trouble with his lanky frame and eye for goal. Above you can see a perfect example of Broja’s bread and butter. Explosiveness, pace and finishing.

Written by Frankie