Sky Sports sources are reporting that Chelsea have surprisingly joined Liverpool and Manchester City in the race to sign Arsenal and England midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
The 23-year-old has just one year left on his deal at the Emirates stadium and has been strongly linked with a £25 million move to Anfield, but Chelsea now appear to be in the race.
The versatile midfielder fought his way back into Arsenal’s starting XI towards the end of the season after a difficult couple of years, but his ability to play in the middle of the park, at wing back or even further forward in an attacking midfield role is likely to attract Antonio Conte to him.
Although he would be unlikely to start regularly, the chance to snap up a young, homegrown talent to improve squad depth should be considered, with the £25 million fee a fair price in today’s inflated market.
Although any deal for Oxlade-Chamberlain seems a long way off at the moment, the Evening Standard are reporting deals for both Romelu Lukaku and Tiemoue Bakayoko are edging closer.
Lukaku left Chelsea for Everton three years ago in a £28 million deal and scored 25 Premier League goals for the Toffees last season.
He has been hotly tipped for a return to his former club, especially with rumours that Antonio Conte has told Diego Costa to leave the club.
Criticisms of Lukaku have often been related to his poor goal ratio against top teams, but Chelsea clearly believe that at 24, he can hack a Champions League campaign and a title challenge.
As for Bakayoko, he has already proved himself in the Champions League, starring for current club Monaco as they reached the semi-finals last term.
Not 23 until mid-August, he is seen by Conte as an upgrade on Nemanja Matic and would add some extra energy to the centre of Chelsea’s midfield alongside N’Golo Kante.
Finally, two youngsters may be leaving the club in the coming weeks, with Tammy Abraham and Izzy Brown closing on moves away to Premier League clubs.
Brown, who shone on loan at Huddersfield Town last season, is reportedly close to an £8 million permanent transfer to the John Smith’s Stadium, say the Telegraph.
Brown has only played once for Chelsea since signing from West Brom in 2013, but the 20-year-old scored four times in 15 appearances for the Terriers, following three in 20 for struggling Rotherham United.
Although Brown may be leaving permanently, fellow youngster Tammy Abraham looks likely to depart on loan, with Swansea City joining the race, as reported by BBC Sport.
Abraham, who is currently with England at the under-21 Euros, caught the eye with an impressive loan spell at Bristol City last term and several Premier League clubs, including Newcastle United, Brighton & Hove Albion and now Swansea are keen on the striker.
The 19-year-old won’t be in Conte’s first team plans for next season, so another loan spell, this time in the Premier League would say a lot about his credentials.
Featured Image: All rights reserved