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Chelsea: Everton battle for defender; pole position for forward; lower league teams in FA Cup draw

The Independent report that Michael Keane remains a top target for the club and is on a four man shortlist for January targets identified by Antonio Conte, but the Blues may face competition from Everton. Leicester City had a £15 million bid for Keane turned down in the summer, with Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool all said to be interested.

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Conte is said to have a long list of targets to add to the Blues defence as Conte seeks players that can fit his model and system well, with Keane’s added attribute of home grown status a bonus when playing in Europe.

The club are also in pole position to secure the services of the “new Zlatan Ibrahimovic”, Alexander Isak, after Real Madrid had a £7 million bid turned down and are now likely to give up on the Swede, say the Sun.

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The 17-year-old has already scored 10 goals in 24 games in Sweden this season and continues to impress with pace and power central to his game, with Chelsea said to have identified him as a long term replacement for Diego Costa up front in a similar mould to the Spaniard, with a number of top European clubs watching.

Chelsea have been drawn in the third round of the FA Cup to play either League 1 side Peterborough United or League 2 team Notts County. County sit 19th in League 2 but came back from two goals behind to equalise in the original fixture at Meadow Lane.

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Louis Laing’s late equaliser was enough to see the tie taken to a replay against the League 1 play-off candidates ahead of the third round tie to be played at Stamford Bridge in January as Antonio Conte makes his FA Cup debut.

Featured Image: All rights reserved by Craig Ballantyne.

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