Premier League • England

Chelsea plot Brighton raid as mass change looms; target better than Arsenal man – Carragher

Brighton defenders Adam Webster and Lewis Dunk

Chelsea are eyeing Brighton centre-half Adam Webster with a defensive shake-up on the horizon, and Jamie Carragher recently labelled him better than an Arsenal favourite at their key trait.

It is quickly dawning on Chelsea and Thomas Tuchel that movement in their defensive ranks is inevitable. All three of Antonio Rudiger, Andreas Christensen and Cesar Azpilicueta are out of contract in the summer.

Rudiger has been linked with Real Madrid and Man Utd, while Christensen and Azpilicueta are on Barcelona’s radar. The latest on club captain Azpilicueta suggested a Barca switch is close.

Given Tuchel primarily deploys a three-man backline, excellent strength in depth at centre-back is more important to the Blues than most.

As such, the Mirror report Brighton’s Adam Webster is being lined up for a summer swoop.

That comes after Chelsea reportedly began to see the writing on the wall over their current stars. In the Mirror’s words, they are ‘preparing themselves for a summer shake-up’.

Adam Webster a perfect fit for Chelsea?

Webster, 27, is adept at operating in a three-man defence. The ex-Bristol City man has been a mainstay under Graham Potter in recent seasons alongside Lewis Dunk. The third spot has rotated between Joel Veltman, Shane Duffy and the recently departed Dan Burn.

Webster is deemed ‘under consideration’ by Blues chiefs amid increasingly impressive displays at the AMEX. Indeed, his showing have been to such a high standard that he is being tipped for an upcoming England call-up.

Rudiger offered massive wage by Manchester United

Rudiger offered massive wage by Manchester United

Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger given massive contract offer by Manchester United

No price tag is cited in the piece, though it’s unlikely Webster will come cheap. However, the lure of joining a side regularly competing for top honours is expected to appeal and could aid negotiations.

And if recent comments of Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher are anything to go by, Chelsea would be making a perfect addition.

Webster better than Stones and White – Carragher

Webster is known for his ball-playing abilities and has been characterised by driving out of defence on the ball.

That is not too dissimilar to the demands Tuchel makes of Rudiger. Having both flanking centre-halves capable of stretching the play and driving into midfield is an enticing prospect.

In Brighton’s 1-1 draw with Chelsea last month – in which Webster scored – Carragher hailed the defender with a massive compliment.

Carragher labelled Webster “better than any other English central defender” with the ball at his feet. That includes the likes of Man City’s John Stones and Arsenal’s Ben White – both of whom are known for their ball-playing abilities.

“Adam Webster’s passing out from the back, with both feet is better than any other English central defender,” wrote Carragher on Twitter (via the Mirror).

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