Premier League • England

Abramovich plots game-changing Chelsea boardroom signing from La Liga, but must beat English rival

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, September 2021

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is reportedly trying to bring former Barcelona director Ramon Planes to his behind-the-scenes team at Stamford Bridge.

Abramovich has overseen a fantastic period of success since he took Chelsea over in June 2003. In fact, no English club has won more major trophies than the Blues since his arrival.

Chelsea have won five Premier League titles and two Champions Leagues – among other silverware – under Abramovich’s ownership. What’s more, they added their first Club World Cup title on Saturday by beating Palmeiras.

Countless star signings – as well as academy stars – have proved vital to the club’s success under Abramovich.

As a result, Sport has claimed that the club chief wants to ensure continued success by adding Planes to his backroom team.

The 54-year-old is currently out of work following his exit from Barcelona in November last year.

However, he made his name as a director at the La Liga club by finding several young talents who now feature in Barcelona’s first team. They also look like being stars of the future.

Indeed, Planes has discovered the likes of midfield duo Gavi and and Pedri. The pair, 17 and 19 respectively, are already firmly in head coach Xavi’s Barcelona plan. They also have a combined 14 caps for Spain.

Ronald Araujo to leave Barcelona for Manchester United or Chelsea

Ronald Araujo will leave Barcelona for Chelsea or Manchester United if no contract from Barca

Planes also helped bring Uruguayan centre-back Ronald Araujo to Barca. The 22-year-old is also a staple in the team and reportedly has transfer interest from Chelsea and Manchester United.

Sport adds that Planes will ‘almost certainly’ continue his career outside of Spain.

But while Chelsea want to bring him to Stamford Bridge, another English club has also met with him to propose him a role in their project.

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The report does not name the club but insists that Chelsea have competition to land Planes.

Furthermore, Valencia are also planning a bid to keep the director in La Liga. In any case, Sport concludes that Planes will make a final decision in March and continue his career.

Azpilicueta a hallmark of Abramovich, Chelsea success

Chelsea defenders Thiago Silva and Cesar Azpilicueta

Amid the players who stand out in the era of Chelsea success under Abramovich, Cesar Azpilicueta is one.

Signed in 2012 from Marseille, the full-back became the club captain in 2019 and has overseen a host of silverware at Stamford Bridge in his decade with the Blues.

In fact, he can now list the Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup, Champions League, Europa League, UEFA Super Cup and Club World Cup on his CV.

Alongside those honours, he has made 459 appearances for Chelsea.

According to pundit Neil Warnock, though, Azpilicueta is lucky to be at Chelsea.