Having brought in a number of key signings during the summer, the new Premier League season was expected to be a much-improved one for Chelsea – especially with former Italy manager Antonio Conte at the helm.
However, while the campaign started off brightly, two defeats and a draw have robbed the Blues of much of their ‘feel good’ factor and Conte is already anxiously looking at how to strengthen his squad, both in January’s transfer window and next summer.
Supporters could be encouraged then by a report in the Sun that says Juventus are willing to part with Conte’s number one transfer target, defender Leonardo Bonucci. However, the rumoured agreement involves a significant transfer fee of up to £50 million as well as the departure of midfielder Cesc Fabregas in the opposite direction.
— The Sun Football ⚽ (@TheSunFootball) October 7, 2016
The report is an ‘exclusive’ and says club owner Roman Abramovich needs to be convince of the merit of the dealing, concluding: “A swap deal would suit both parties, with the Italian solving the Blues’ defensive woes — and Fabregas returning order to a midfield which has seen much upheaval in recent transfer windows.”
Chelsea had a bid for the defender turned down during the summer and despite the recruitment of David Luiz, the Blues’ management team is particularly anxious to add options to a defensive line that has already been quite leaky this term. Luiz is already, reportedly, out of favour with Conte, who is also said to be seeking a replacement for England international Gary Cahill.
However, the Daily Mail is reporting that the Serie A club are set to offer the Italian an improved contract of £100,000 per week in attempt to secure his long-term future and end speculation around a possible exit once and for all.
The newspaper adds that any potential move to the Premier League – as Bonucci has also been linked with Manchester City – would depend on the player’s own family situation. The Juve star’s two-year-old son has been quite ill this year and underwent surgery in July, meaning any transfer could be on hold until the youngster recovers fully.