Chelsea midfielders N’Golo Kanté and Jorginho will not be among an exodus of first-team players this summer, according to a report.
Despite the financial uncertainty created by the COVID-19 crisis, Chelsea are eager to splash the cash when the transfer window opens, having operated fairly frugally over the past few seasons.
Though they still have some funds available from the sale of Eden Hazard to Real Madrid, the club recorded a pre-tax loss of £102m in their last set of financial accounts, so they are looking to cash in on some fringe players in order to fund any incomings.
According to ESPN, the list of likely departures is headed up by Tiémoué Bakayoko, who spent the season on loan at former club Monaco. Michy Batshuayi’s future is similarly in doubt; the Belgian has only started once in the Premier League this season with Tammy Abraham preferred up front.
In defence, Davide Zappacosta, Marcos Alonso and Emerson Palmieri are also looking likely to be shown the exit door.
Both Alonso and Palmieri have struggled for game time this season with Frank Lampard preferring to field Cesar Azpilicueta at left-back. Their first-team opportunities are likely to be further limited next season with Chelsea keen on bringing in another defender.
They retain a long-held interest in Leicester City star Ben Chilwell, and a source told 90min last month that the Foxes are willing to part with the England international as long as their hefty £75m price tag is met.
Though Chelsea are poised to trim their squad significantly, the report also states that claims that the Blues are open to losing Kanté or Jorginho are wide of the mark. The former has been linked with Real Madrid in the past but Lampard is keen to retain the midfield dynamo.
There has also been talk of Jorginho linking up with former manager Maurizio Sarri at Juventus – potentially in a swap deal with Marijic Pjanic. Again, it seems Lampard has little interest in making this happen.
Edited by Tiyani wa ka Mabasa