Chelsea are already playing catch-up in terms of their summer business after shelving their recruitment plans because of the sanctions placed on Roman Abramovich.
Todd Boehly’s takeover means they can finally get to work on the rebuild Thomas Tuchel believes is necessary to challenge for the title next season.
He has the backing of the new owner – and all eyes will be on the American in his first summer window in charge
Boehly could make up to £200million available – but he is new to the world of football and he would not be the first to be caught by surprise in his first foray into the market.
Tuchel knows he needs to spend in the region of £100m just to stand still as he desperately looks to replace out-of-contract Toni Rudiger and Andreas Christensen. He needs two top-class centre-backs to fill the void left by the pair, with Jules Kounde a top target.
Chelsea’s success under Tuchel has been based on a rock-solid defence, so it is vital he brings the right players, who can fit straight in. Josko Gvardiol from RB Leipzig, Villarreal’s Pau Torres, Jose Gimenez from Atletico Madrid and Torino’s Gleison Bremer are also on an extensive list of defensive targets.
What else they need
Tuchel wants to strengthen in every department. Conor Gallagher will be thrust into midfield after his outstanding loan at Crystal Palace – and if Jorginho departs then another midfielder could also come in, with Declan Rice a long-term target.
Cover at wing-back is needed, with at least one of Cesar Azpilicueta or Marcos Alonso likely to leave
But an overhaul in attack is likely, with Tuchel accepting his forward line cannot match rivals Manchester City or Liverpool. Leipzig’s Christopher Nkunku is a target, while Tuchel is a huge admirer of Robert Lewandowski.
Kounde is expected to join – possibly for as much as £68m if Sevilla insist on his buyout clause being met. Another centre-back will also be targeted, while Levi Colwill will be given the chance to force his way into Tuchel’s plans in the summer.
Gallagher has been earmarked for the first team, while there is longstanding interest in Rice. Ivan Perisic has also been linked at wing-back.
Tuchel needs to add creativity and goals, with Nkunku watched, while Lewandowski would be a statement signing for Boehly.
There could be a whole host of high-profile departures. Talks are planned with Azpilicueta, while Alonso is believed to want to move to Spain.
Jorginho and N’Golo Kante are coming up to the final year of their contracts, leaving Chelsea with a major decision over whether to hand them long-term deals. Kepa Arrizabalaga is expected go, as long as Chelsea are offered decent money for the world’s most expensive goalkeeper.
Callum Hudson-Odoi has failed to convince Tuchel, while Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner could both go. Romelu Lukaku wants talks about his future, but is determined to make it work at Chelsea despite such a disappointing season since his £97.5m club-record move from Inter Milan.
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