Chelsea: Summer transfer window presents unique opportunity

Bayern Munich's Brazilian midfielder Philippe Coutinho (R) passes the ball during the UEFA Champion's League round of 16 first leg football match between Chelsea and Bayern Munich at Stamford Bridge in London on February 25, 2020. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP) (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
Bayern Munich's Brazilian midfielder Philippe Coutinho (R) passes the ball during the UEFA Champion's League round of 16 first leg football match between Chelsea and Bayern Munich at Stamford Bridge in London on February 25, 2020. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP) (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images) /

Chelsea has a big test ahead with the upcoming summer transfer window. Throughout this season, it’s been easy to tell which positions Chelsea needs to improve on.

Assessing Chelsea’s performance, the midfield is the only group that regularly performs well. Kepa’s starting job has been on the line after a string of poor performances. Chelsea has had issues at left back and centerback. The Blues have also been in search of a striker to take the load off Tammy Abraham.

Starting with Chelsea’s defensive issues, the left backs and centerbacks have struggled this season. Marcos Alonso and Emerson Palmieri have not performed to the level Frank Lampard expects. There were some matches where even Cesar Azpilicueta didn’t play to Lampard’s expectation, but he has had no other choice. The left back who has been on Chelsea’s radar for quite some time is Leicester City’s Ben Chilwell. Chilwell has seemed to be Chelsea’s main transfer target right from the get-go. With Paris Saint Germain linked to Alex Telles, it now puts some pressure on the Blues to make a move for another left back they are keen on.

The centerbacks have been up and down all season. Antonio Rudiger was injured for the early part of the season. In the matches he’s played, he performed quite well. But, Rudiger is an injury-prone player and has been linked with a move to the Bundesliga. One way or another, the Blues need another centerback. Barcelona centerback Samuel Umtiti is Chelsea’s best option. He has been linked to many teams, but a few months ago, he stated Chelsea as his preferred destination. This transfer would work out for all parties. The Blues get an upgrade at centerback, Barcelona can finally sell Umtiti and he join his preferred club.

Chelsea’s issues at goalkeeper have only worsened over the last few months. After a string of poor performances from Kepa, he lost the starting job to Willy Caballero. Andre Onana is set to leave Ajax after they gave him the green light. Onana has been linked to Chelsea and Barcelona for a while now, but Chelsea seems to be the frontrunner. Onana looks to join his current teammate Hakim Ziyech at Stamford Bridge. Bringing Andre Onana to Chelsea would be the ideal goalkeeper signing, as he’s the best out of all of their goalkeeper targets.

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Forward has been a position of need for Chelsea all season. The Blues haven’t had a definitive backup for Abraham. Under Lampard’s system, players like Olivier Giroud and Michy Batshuayi do not fit so well. The need for a new striker has been near the top of Chelsea’s priority list. Blues fans are looking forward to who could be the next Eden Hazard. Jadon Sancho has been the west London club’s No. 1 attacking target. The only things holding them back are the minimum price and the competition. Chelsea’s main competitors are Manchester Unites and Liverpool. Liverpool is most likely to drop out, as they have prioritized RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner. As the race comes down to the Blues and Manchester United, it will be all up to Sancho. He’s been a Blues fan since his youth and is close friends with many of Chelsea’s young players. Sancho is one of few that is wanted by Lampard, the fans and the players.

Another one of Chelsea’s heavily linked targets in Lyon striker Moussa Dembele. Dembele has played great for Lyon this season, scoring 22 goals and getting seven assists. There is only one problem, Lampard reportedly does not want to bid on Dembele as Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang is apparently avaliable. Lampard believes he can secure Aubameyang’s services for a similar price. Whatever path the club takes, bringing aboard a new attacker will definitely increase the offensive production and the average goals per game stat.

Assuming the Blues can secure an attacker and defender, they would indirectly be announcing themselves as the next powerhouse in the Premier League. They have a very bright future ahead of them, especially with many U-21 players being core pieces of the first team already.

Chelsea and its management deserve a lot more credit than they actually receive. The Blues went through quite a transition last summer with the departure of manager Maurizio Sarri and the loss of their best player, Eden Hazard. Lampard has done an amazing job in trusting the academy players. Chelsea has found itself some stars in Billy Gilmour, Mason Mount, Fikayo Tomori, Reece James and Callum Hudson-Odoi.

The Blues are going to have a long summer ahead of them. After the league resumes, the fans’ focus will turn to the looming transfer window. As UEFA looks to end the current season in August, the latest domestic leagues can start is the first week of September. That will give teams around the world a few weeks to be able to transfer players in and out.

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Whatever the Blues decide to do in the transfer window, they will surely be commended for bringing in new players to help the squad.