Chelsea’s conservative approach in the January window will allow them to put in place an enormous triple summer splurge which could set the Blues back more than £200m, according to a report.
The Blues were in the market to sign a new striker in the January window, but it’s thought that only an offer for Edinson Cavani was made with Frank Lampard and Co taking a cautious approach to transfer dealings.
By the time summer 2020 rolls around, the Blues will have gone 18 months since signing a new player, though deals were rubberstamped in summer 2019 for both Christian Pulisic and Matteo Kovacic with both deals being finalised prior to the club’s transfer embargo.
Chelsea still have the £100m windfall in their pockets from Eden Hazard’s move to Real Madrid in the summer, while qualification for next season’s Champions League – a competition the Blues still hope to move deep into this season too – could further swell their coffers.
And according to the Evening Standard, this will lay the foundations for an enormous summer transfer assault, with the Blues reportedly targeting three premium stars to add to their ranks.
As per the report, Chelsea are ready to meet the €111m (£94m) exit clause in the contract of Inter Milan forward Lautaro Martinez, who is also being chased by Barcelona.
Martinez is growing into one of the biggest attacking prospects on the planet having made an impression at Inter since moving there in 2018, and has been linked with Manchester United, though it’s claimed the Red Devils have since cooled their interest.
Martinez recently said that links with United were a good sign for his development, but would not commit to saying he wanted the move.
“Today, I’m an Inter player and I’m happy here,” the 22-year-old told TyC Sports.
“The fact that they speak well of me means that I’m doing something right and the intention is to continue on this path.
“I’m calm, happy and at ease with Inter.”
Lampard is also said to be keen on signing one of either Timo Werner – also strongly linked with Liverpool – and Lyon’s French striker Moussa Dembele.
Werner has scored 84 goals in 139 appearances for Leipzig, including 23 in 25 matches this season, but his exit clause – worth just £42.8m at the current exchange rate – has also seen the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United also tipped to compete for his signature.
And his latest comments will no doubt heighten claims about a future transfer to one of his suitors after he spoke warmly about playing in the Premier League.
“The Premier League is certainly the most interesting league, you have to say,” he told Bild. “There is a certain flair to watching the English league and playing there.”
Dembele, meanwhile, is believed to be on another striker on United’s radar, though Lyon’s controversial presidet Jean-Michel Aulas has gone to great lengths to warn clubs away from their prized asset.
“Our players are often targeted,” he said.
“We want Moussa Dembele and Lucas Tousart [linked with Hertha Berlin] to stay.
“The latter has received significant offers. If he leaves, we will have to replace him first.
“But I think they will stay. Now is not the time for us to weaken our team.”
Chelsea in transfer hunt for Koulibaly
Chelsea’s plans to strengthen their attack don’t halt their either, with the Blues are also strongly reported to be in the running to sign another Man Utd target in the shape of Kalidou Koulibaly.
The highly-rated defender was one of the names linked with United last summer before they broke the world record transfer fee for a defender by purchasing Harry Maguire.
However, Naples-based newspaper Il Mattino (via the Daily Mirror) reveals that Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur are all also in the race for him.
The London-based trio or United will have a better chance of signing him if Napoli miss out on European qualification this season – with Gennaro Gattuso’s side currently down in 10th, but on a run of three successive wins in all competitions.
It’s reported, however, Koulibaly is ready to test himself in the Premier League and Napoli’s apparently reduced asking price of €75m (£64m) would severely tempt the Blues into making a concrete offer.