Ten for sale in harsh Chelsea cleansing as Boehly pursues deadly Serie A star in swap deal for failing Lampard signing
Chelsea owner Todd Boehly is set to start a firesale at Stamford Bridge to cut the numbers in Graham Potter’s squad, with a source giving the names of 10 players who will go this summer.
The American has operated like a storm rushing through the club ever since his purchase was finalised last summer. Indeed, in the two transfer windows under his leadership, the Blues have recruited an astounding £500m-plus worth of new players. Yet that 17 player inflow has left Potter with an enlarged squad, which has created the coach an additional unexpected difficulty.
Chelsea were always used to spending large under the Roman Abramovich era. Yet the Boehly age is on a whole level altogether. Thus it came as no surprise when Chelsea revealed their yearly financial statement revealing a £121.3m loss.
As a result, Ben Jacobs has told Football Audit that sales will become just as vital to Chelsea this summer as new signings.
And while the Blues aim to hand Potter extra finances to bolster his squad, there will certainly be more exits than arrivals.
Now it looks the first of those undesirable stars is closing in on a potential escape path.
And per sources, Boehly intends to kill two birds with one stone by bringing in one of their summer targets as part of a swap agreement.
The player being used as bait is Edouard Mendy, who was signed by Frank Lampard in a £22m move from Rennes.
His signing first appeared like money incredibly well spend as the Senegal star immediately established himself as No 1.
And he was a crucial influence in helping Chelsea win the 2021 Champions League final, beating Man City 1-0 in Porto.
Unfortunately, Mendy has lost his place this season to Kepa, and has just 11 games under his belt this season. As such, he is one of the players ostensibly cleared to move on by Boehly.
But rumours in Italy indicate the Blues are looking to utilise the 31-year-old in a swap deal for Juventus attacker Dusan Vlahovic.
The Serbian has a good record in Italy with 69 goals in 157 games over periods at Fiorentina and Juve.
Factoring in the other 10 assists to his name also, that gives him a record of a goal involvement every 1.98 games.
Such a record has seen Vlahovic earn admiring glances from abroad, not least Arsenal and Manchester United.
Indeed, the Gunners attempted and failed to sign Vlahovic in January 2022, prior to his move to Juventus. And the 23-year-old is on United’s radar ahead of the summer window.
But, it is now Chelsea who are supposedly leading the charge. They feel Juventus’ eagerness to secure a new No 1 might sway the chase in their favour. That’s despite prior allegations the Bianconeri are unwilling to consider a swap deal.
Apparently, the Italian giants are looking to bring in a new custodian with Wojciech Szczesny sharing the gloves with Mattia Perin this season.
If Juventus bite or not, remains to be seen. But, it does appear like Mendy’s time is over with the Senegalese one of 10 projected to exit Stamford Bridge this summer.
And according to Calciomercato, numerous of their undesirable talents could discover escape routes in Serie A.
For openers, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Hakim Ziyech and Ruben Loftus-Cheek are all on AC Milan’s radar.
Blues teammate Trevoh Chalobah is desired by cross-city rivals Inter Milan as a potential replacement for Milan Skriniar.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will also have his contract torn up, leaving him free to depart. Both Milan sides are allegedly exploring moves.
Christian Pulisic, meanwhile, is another talent apparently available for sale. The American has interest from various sides, including Milan, Roma and Juventus.
Romelu Lukaku is the ninth player on the list likely to depart. He has spent the 2022/23 season on loan at Inter Milan. Its CEO Beppe Marota has suggested he will return the Belgian back to Stamford Bridge once his loan ends.
But, current sources say the two clubs are open to considering a fresh deal that may retain Lukaku in Italy.
Mateo Kovacic is another huge name expected to leave. His term expires in summer 2024 and the Blues are looking for about £35m – £40m. Manchester United and Liverpool are among those seemingly eager.
And finally, the Blues will also pay an emotional farewell to Mason Mount. He too is apparently on Liverpool’s radar, while the latest rumours indicate Bayern Munich are also mulling a swoop.