Chelsea are all set to announce the arrival of Romelu Lukaku early this week as Thomas Tuchel gets the striker he has wanted since the end of last season.
The Blues are expected to conclude a £97.5million deal imminently and bolster the attacking ranks at Stamford Bridge, with Lukaku having undergone part of his medical in Milan on Monday.
After a quiet start to the transfer window which mainly focused on outgoings so far for the Blues, Marina Granovskaia has got down to work to secure the signature of Lukaku.
It is set to be a busy few days for Chelsea ahead of the start of the new season, with decisions needing to be made on outgoings as well as incomings.
Tuchel revealed to football.london last week that he had 42 players at Cobham on Monday for training, that includes all of his first team players as well as those who returned from loan spells last season and the talented crop of youngsters.
Danny Drinkwater and Ross Barkley both missed out for the 2-2 draw with Spurs on Wednesday night and both have very uncertain futures in west London. Michy Batshuayi also didn’t make an appearance though he was named among the substitutes for the game.
With a week until the Blues kick off their Premier League season against Crystal Palace, we take a look at the latest state of play for the Blues in the transfer market, which is open until August 31 in case you’d forgotten.
Everything is being dominated by the imminent arrival of Romelu Lukaku on that previously mentioned record deal from Inter Milan.
It is a case of third time lucky for Chelsea following two rejected bids last week as Inter held out for £100million. They haven’t quite got that but £97.5million can’t exactly be sniffed at.
There were two realistic striker options for Chelsea this summer, Lukaku and Erling Haaland. When the club gets a Lukaku deal over the line, any potential move for Haaland down the road is probably dead in the water.
Once the move for Lukaku is (hopefully) concluded then Chelsea will turn their attention to signing Jules Kounde, the French centre back at Sevilla.
As revealed by football.london a fortnight ago, the Spaniards are not likely to deal for anything less than €60million. Likewise with Inter, Sevilla would prefer a cash move though Chelsea have reportedly been offering players as part of any package.
Tuchel has plenty of decisions to make on players over the coming days with pre-season now done and dusted.
Tuchel had 42 players at the Cobham training complex last week, an extremely bloated squad, and that is expected to be cut down.
The aforementioned Drinkwater and Barkley are on the chopping block, as is Tiemoue Bakayoko, Baba Rahman, Batshuayi and, according to reports, Ruben Loftus-Cheek. Trevoh Chalobah is likely to leave on loan too while Kenedy and Matt Miazga are also expected to depart.
Tammy Abraham’s name is also in the mix for a departure, which will likely come into even more focus should Chelsea secure the signature of Lukaku.
Abraham made only two Premier League appearances between March and May last season thanks to a combination of injuries and non-selection from Tuchel, who left the striker out of the matchday squad for the FA Cup and Champions League finals.
Atalanta are believed to be keen on the Chelsea striker as a bit of a merry-go-round goes on. If Chelsea sign Lukaku then Inter need a replacement, believed to be Atalanta’s Duvan Zapata or Roma’s Edin Dzeko. Roma are also reportedly keen on Abraham as a potential replacement.
West Ham and Southampton have been credited with an interest in Abraham, but if a move were to take place, Chelsea would likely prefer it to be a permanent one. Time will tell.
Speaking of Southampton, they are closing in on a loan deal for Armando Broja following their sale of Danny Ings to Aston Villa. The Saints are also recruitng Adam Armstrong from Blackburn Rovers, so Broja will have competition.