The news broke this morning that Manchester United had apparently agreed a £75m deal with Everton for Romelu Lukaku to head to Old Trafford, right under the noses of the current Premier League champions, Chelsea.
It was widely assumed that the Blues would be re-signing the Belgian forward and that United would be in for Alvaro Moratta, in fact there was even talk that United representatives were in Madrid with a deal expected to be concluded by the end of the week.
However, if rumours are to be believed, this is now dead in the water and Lukaku appears to be off to Manchester, but if this is true, what now for Chelsea?
Rumours about the imminent transfer of Aubameyang have been rife for about 3 years now, be it to Real Madrid, Barcelona, PSG, Bayern Munich, or Manchester City, the price has been anywhere from £60m-£120m but maybe now is the right time for him to leave. Are Dortmund going to be winning leagues and challenging for the Champions League? Maybe the latter but definitely not the former.
Chelsea will able to offer multiple chances of silverware plus much higher wage packet. The man scored 31 goals in 31 league games last season for Dortmund with a record of 85 in 128 in the league overall for the club, that’s an astonishing record. Would he fit in Conte’s system?
Well he may need to do a bit more defending than he’s used to but he’s been playing under an equally as demanding a system under Thomas Tuchel so adapting shouldn’t be an issue. The funds are there its just whether the Chelsea hierarchy fancy him and whether Dortmund are willing to let him go. Every man has his price.
Pinching the best players from Arsenal is a mini hobby for the other Premier League clubs: Cole, Van Persie, Nasri, all have gone and won more elsewhere and there is a strong chance that Sanchez could be the next in that line. He has been strongly linked with Manchester City and a reunion with Pep Guardiola all season but Chelsea could do their thing and snatch him from under their noses.
Sanchez is thought to like life in London its just the lack of true trophy winning potential from Arsenal and that lack of world class signings that’s putting him off. Sanchez is a bit like Hazard but arguably better suited at playing through the middle than his Belgian counterpart. Conte may favour someone strong and able to hold up play but Sanchez could give him a different option.
The idea of Alexis Sanchez lining up with Eden Hazard to his left and Willian or Pedro to his right is a rather terrifying prospect for any team.
Belotti is another than has been rumoured to be on the brink of a move to any number of Premier League clubs: Spurs, City, United, and Chelsea all linked with the Italian forward. However Chelsea appear to be in pole position mainly due to the not so secret desire of Antonio Conte to go shopping in Italy, regardless of how expensive it might be.
The Italian is coming off the back of a prolific season for Torino, 26 goals in 35 league games is an astounding record in a league known for its tight defending. However the one sticking point could be that Belotti has a 100 million euro buy-out clause in his contract that applies only to foreign teams, now while Chelsea do have the financial muscle to pay £80 million for a player, they would probably be looking to do it on someone who is slightly more proven.
Probably none of the above, knowing Chelsea and basing it on their recent transfer business, they’ll either stick with Costa or pick up a £30m bargain from somewhere and repeat the same process in 3 years’ time. Chelsea have the financial muscle to compete with the other clubs so its time that they started showing it.
Written by Olly Norman.