Chelsea are about to embark on a new chapter of their 117-year existence. Todd Boehly is expected to support Thomas Tuchel in the summer transfer window as the German manager looks to close the gap to Manchester City and Liverpool.
To do that, there needs to be major surgery within the Chelsea squad in the coming months. Players such as Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger have left the club on free transfers, meaning the Blues will need to look elsewhere to replace the two first-team centre-backs.
The roster we’ll see in the coming period could be completely different from the one we’ve seen stumble across the finish line to third in the 2021/22 season. With that said, football.london take a look at what Tuchel’s options might look like next season.
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Edouard Mendy should remain as the first-choice goalkeeper. The Senegal international may have shown some vulnerability in the second half of the season, but he is without a doubt the blues’ best option in that position.
Kepa Arrizabalaga, meanwhile, could be heading out of Stamford Bridge. The Spaniard is no longer considered the first-choice goalkeeper and has been heavily associated with a departure from the club. Marcus Bettinelli could stay and remain the third pick.
A very interesting position for Chelsea and one that needs to be addressed in the coming weeks. As mentioned, Rudiger and Christensen left, so they need to be replaced one way or another.
Jules Kounde remains a target for Chelsea and with the club announcing his new look earlier in the week, the Blues are now licensed to go ahead with their pursuit of the Sevilla and France centre-back. Chelsea are also keen to bring in another defender, in addition to Kounde, to Stamford Bridge.
Tuchel has a list of defenders he likes, including Matthijs de Ligt, Josko Gvardiol, Gleison Bremer, José Gimenez, Presnel Kimpembe and Pau Torres. The Blues might also be tempted to give Levi Colwill a chance should he be recalled from his loan deal at Huddersfield Town.
For the full-back position… The right-back and left-back can be tackled this summer. If Cesar Azpilicueta leaves, Chelsea may need to explore the market for a replacement. Jonathan Clauss could be that man. Likewise, Marcos Alonso remains linked to a move, with Barcelona claiming to be interested in the Spaniard’s services.
Borna Sosa, left-back for VfB Stuttgart, is very popular with Chelsea. football.london understands Marc Cucurella, another Blues target, who prefers to move to Manchester City.
Another interesting one for Chelsea. N’Golo Kante and Jorginho have just over 12 months left on their current agreements at Stamford Bridge, with both futures uncertain. It looks like Kante’s contract is what Chelsea are most interested in resolving right now, but that could all change, of course.
Ross Barkley looks set to leave the club as he also enters the final year of his contract at Stamford Bridge. After playing so little in the 2021/22 season, the Blues weren’t going to get in the way of the midfielder if he wanted to leave.
Conor Gallagher and Billy Gilmour could be recalled from their loan spells at Crystal Palace and Norwich City respectively to give Chelsea more depth in midfield. Gallagher especially looks to have a chance to prove himself under Tuchel next season.
Declan Rice remains Chelsea’s interest. However, West Ham want around £150m for the England international.
Another position with so much uncertainty. Timo Werner, Christian Pulisic and Hakim Ziyech are all linked to departures from the club this summer. Meanwhile, Romelu Lukaku is set to officially leave on loan from Stamford Bridge next week.
The only ones you can say 100% will stay at Chelsea next season are Kai Havertz and Mason Mount. There may not be much point in offloading all the attackers mentioned above, but there could be an exodus of some of Tuchel’s current options.
Armando Broja enjoyed a good 2021/22 season on loan at Southampton and could return to Chelsea this summer. Whether or not the Albanian will be sold remains to be seen, with several clubs keen to sign the talented striker.
Chelsea’s main attacking targets are Raheem Sterling, Richarlison and Ousmane Dembele at the time of writing. Sterling is someone Tuchel really likes and the club believes they can sign the Manchester City forward for £45m with one year remaining on his contract at the Etihad Stadium.
Richarlison has a price tag of nearly £75m on his head, with Everton looking to get every penny possible for their striker. However, there is an understanding at Goodison Park that the Brazilian international could leave this summer.
Meanwhile, Dembélé is still considering his future. Chelsea await the Frenchman’s decision.
According to a report by the Telegraph, Chelsea are open to selling the likes of Marcos Alonso, Cesar Azpilicueta, Kepa Arrizabalaga, Timo Werner, Hakim Ziyech, Christian Pulisic, Ross Barkley and Kenedy if the right offers come. Through the CIES Football Observatory, the total values of these players add up to £206 million.
Chelsea could look to re-link Kanté on new terms in the coming weeks, with the Frenchman still an integral part of Tuchel’s plans at Stamford Bridge. Mount and Reece James are also expected to receive new contracts.
goalkeepers: Edouard Mendy, Kepa Arrizabalaga, Marcus Bettinelli
Defenders: Reece James, Cesar Azpilicueta, Jules Kounde, Matthijs de LigtLevi Colwill, Malang Sarr, Thiago Silva, Trevoh Chalobah, Ben Chilwell, Borna Sosa
Midfielders: N’Golo Kante, Jorginho, Matthew Kovacic, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Conor Gallagher, Billy Gilmour
To forward: Mason Mount, Christian Pulisic, Raheem Sterling, Ousmane DembeleKai Havertz, Callum Hudson-Odoi