Chelsea

Chelsea

Premier League • England

Paper Talk: Three in, two out as Marina Granovskaia shakes up Chelsea squad

Marina Granovskaia Chelsea director

Marina Granovskaia is looking to make three new signings at Chelsea in January, with two players likely to leave, Cristiano Ronaldo is looking to leave Manchester United and wants a surprise move to Spain, while Wednesday’s transfer gossip has a big claim on the future of Leeds star Raphinha.

GRANOVSKAIA WANTS THREE DEFENDER SIGNINGS AT CHELSEA

Chelsea are making plans to sign three new defenders in January – as Thomas Tuchel and Marina Granovskaia look to freshen up their options.

The Blues head into 2022 very much alive in four competitions. However, they do so on the back of a large shadow looming over a number of players in their squad.

Indeed, Cescar Azpilicueta, Andreas Christensen, Thiago Silva and Antonio Rudiger are all out of contract in six months time. And from January 1, all four are eligible to speak to interested overseas clubs over a move.

And while Chelsea remain confident of keeping Azpilicueta and Silva, there are growing fears that Rudiger will be on the move.

To ease concerns, Ireland’s Sunday World claims Granovskaia is already working on three January deals.

Top of their wanted list is Sevilla’s Jules Kounde, with the Blues ready to negotiate again over his signing. They tried to land the Frenchman in the summer but were unable to strike a deal with the LaLiga side.

They also want to sign a new left-back with Ben Chilwell likely to be sidelined for the rest of the season.

Chelsea to pinch Newcastle target Lucas Digne

Newcastle United have their eyes set on Digne and Umtiti but will need to outbid Chelsea to get the left back

Granovskaia wants full-backs

As per the report, they are working on two deals with Lucas Digne of Everton their No 1 target.

However, they are also reportedly chasing Barcelona’s Sergino Dest. The American can play at either full-back position and is a player much admired by Tuchel.

It won’t be all one-way traffic though under Granovskaia at Chelsea.

With Rudiger heading towards the exit door, he is likely to be joined by Ross Barkley. The midfielder looks likely to re-sign with boyhood club Everton.

There may also be another exit on the cards too, with one of Callum Hudson-Odoi or Hakim Ziyech likely to depart.

Hudson-Odoi is wanted by Lazio, while Ziyech has admirers in Borussia Dortmund.

RONALDO CHASING MOVE TO BARCELONA

Cristiano Ronaldo Man Utd

Cristiano Ronaldo is asking Gerard Pique to check with Xavi about a potential move to Barcelona after being left unhappy at Manchester United. (The Sun)

Real Sociedad are hoping to persuade Manchester United to release Juan Mata as a free agent in January. (The Sun)

Eric Bailly is flying back to Manchester United from the Ivory Coast and is in contention to play against Burnley. (The Sun)

Barcelona are pondering moves for Chelsea pair Cesar Azpilicueta and Andreas Christensen, according to reports in Spain. (The Sun)

Fiorentina hot shot Dusan Vlahovic favours a move to the Premier League, but Arsenal are reportedly out of the race. (Daily Mail)

Arsenal are reportedly the frontrunners to land Philippe Coutinho on loan next month. The Barcelona outcast is looking towards Emirates Stadium over their Premier League rivals. (Daily Mail)

NEWCASTLE LOOKING TO ‘GABIGOL’

Neymar Jnr, Gabriel Barbosa, Brazil celeb

Newcastle are considering a loan move for Brazil international forward Gabriel Barbosa with Benfica refusing to sell Darwin Nunez in January. (Daily Mail)

Ross Barkley looks likely to make a sensational return to Goodison Park next month with Everton chasing the Chelsea star. (Daily Mail)

Queens Park Rangers are frontrunners to sign experienced defender Steve Cook from Bournemouth – with Nottingham Forest also keen. (Daily Mail)

Former Manchester City defender Cameron Humphreys-Grant, now at Belgian club Zulte Waregem, is weighing up a return to England. The likes of Derby, Cardiff, Birmingham and Blackburn are all chasing deals. (Daily Mail)

Brighton forward Aaron Connolly is closing in on a loan move to promotion-chasing Middlesbrough. (Daily Mail)

Thomas Tuchel insists he will not stop standing up for his Chelsea players after conceding he has “zero per cent” understanding over the Premier League’s schedule over winter. (The Guardian)

AND MORE TRANSFER GOSSIP

Manchester United are targeting a surprise deal Bayer Leverkusen wonderkid Florian Wirtz. (Daily Star)

Newcastle United are reportedly looking to make a sensational swoop for PSG midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum, who is already unhappy at PSG. (Daily Star)

West Ham are reportedly weighing up a move for Bayer Leverkusen striker Patrik Schick. (Daily Star)

Manchester City are not planning a replacement for Ferran Torres and instead plan to give 19-year-old Cole Palmer more chances. (The Times)

Napoli forward Lorenzo Insigne is likely to snub Tottenham in favour of a mega-money transfer to MLS side Toronto FC. (Daily Mirror)

Raphinha is unlikely to push for a January move from Leeds despite links to Liverpool and Bayern Munich. (Daily Mirror)

Rangers are “leading the race” to sign Paris Saint-Germain youngster Xavi Simons, according to reports. (Daily Record)