CHELSEA are preparing for a summer of activity as manager Frank Lampard looks to reshape his Blues' squad.
The Blues have been given renewed hope in their pursuit of Jadon Sancho and are making a last ditch attempt to prevent Timo Werner joining Liverpool, according to reports.
Follow all the latest updates and transfer gossip below…
THE KID'S ALRIGHT
Chelsea’s Billy Gilmour sits at No11 on a list of the world’s most promising young footballers.
Stars born after 2001 have been considered in the list, compiled by Talent Scout.
1. Rayan Cherki (FRA, 2003, attacking midfielder, Olympique Lyon)
2. Eduardo Camavinga (FRA, 2002, defensive midfielder, Rennes)
3. Mason Greenwood (ENG, 2001, striker, Manchester United)
4. Mohamed Ihattaren (NED, 2002, attacking midfielder, PSV Eindhoven)
5. Rodrygo (BRA, 2001, winger, Real Madrid)
6. Gabriel Martinelli (BRA, 2001, striker, Arsenal)
7. Reinier (BRA, 2002, attacking midfielder, Real Madrid)
8. Ansu Fati (ESP, 2002, winger, FC Barcelona)
9. Bukayo Saka (ENG, 2001, left-back, Arsenal)
10. William Saliba (FRA, 2001, centre-back, Arsenal)
11. Billy Gilmour (SCO, 2001, central midfielder, Chelsea)
SUITS YOU SER
Lazio have admitted the future of £80million-rated midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is in his own hands.
Chelsea and Manchester United have long kept track of the 25-year-old, but have always been told he is not for sale.
But now, Lazio sporting director Igli Tare has revealed if the player wants to leave the club it “shouldn't be a problem” but it would have to be decided at the end of the season.
Tare told Sky Sport Italia: “Generally speaking, if a player thinks that their time is up and wants to go somewhere else, it shouldn't be a problem.
“Eras come to an end. The fact he stayed in Rome for five years is because he has strong links with the city and club.
“When there was some temptation, a bit on our part, a bit on his, we never went all the way. However, things must be assessed at the end of the season.”
GOV'T: NO PREM GREEN LIGHT
The government is NOT convinced the Premier League can resume yet, even behind closed doors.
Despite extensive contingency planning, including for the potential of playing the remaining matches at neutral venues, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden warned the game is yet to get the “green light”.
Neutral venues are expected to be discussed in a meeting of Premier League clubs on Monday, while other mooted options for restarting the season have even involved the possibility of playing games abroad.
But Dowden told BBC Radio 4: “They've not been given the green light.
“If we can get a plan that works then I'd like us to be able to go ahead with it because I think it would be good for the nation, it would be good for football as a whole.
“I'm really hopeful we can get this up and running but public safety must come first so it's only if we're confident of that that we'll be able to proceed.”
MORE ON SANCHO
Balague added: “I have spoken to Chelsea in terms of a couple of suggestions of players that have been mentioned related to them and they said: 'We just don't want to make investments, big investments'.
“It leaves then Manchester United who are also saying 'forget about players that would cost £100m-plus' – that would be Sancho.
“So as I say very, very unlikely that those things take place.”
NOT A DON DEAL
Guillem Balague has warned that Jadon Sancho moving his off-season is “very unlikely”.
He said: “I know that obviously Chelsea has looked into the possibility of Sancho, so has Manchester United.
“Sancho is playing with the idea of either staying or going but it needs a huge investment to take Sancho away from Borussia Dortmund right now. We will see if that money's available.
“If anybody's got it, according to all the agents I have spoken to, it will be Chelsea or Manchester United or Manchester City.
“But if Manchester City don't have European football, it leaves Manchester United and Chelsea.”
JOSE IS 'AMAZING'
Nemanja Matic has also revealed what life is like playing under Jose Mourinho.
The Serbian, 31, has played under Mourinho at Chelsea and at Manchester United.
He said: “It depends. If you win, he's the best guy ever.
“But if you lose, you're hiding from him at the training ground.
“But he's an amazing coach.”
Nemanja Matic has revealed why he left Chelsea for Manchester United in 2017.
The Serbian midfielder left Stamford Bridge’s title-winning side for Old Trafford, while Jose Mourinho was in charge, with United paying £40million for his signature.
He said: “I was very happy at Chelsea, but I thought it was the right moment to change club.
“There were reasons which are hard for me to say now.
“I will never forget my time there, but I'm a Manchester United player now.”
Premier League clubs opposed to the restart fear Liverpool will play the kids once they have won the title, REPORTS MARTIN LIPTON.
And they say that will wreck the integrity of the competition.
Jurgen Klopp caused a storm in February by fielding the Reds’ youth team in a 1-0 FA Cup replay win over Shrewsbury.
Now some top-flight rivals are arguing he will repeat the trick as soon as his runaway leaders bag the title — and they claim that is a reason to stop Project Restart.
Monday’s meeting of the 20 shareholder clubs will be a critical staging post on the journey towards a potential June 12 return to playing matches.
Clubs that have already played Liverpool twice this term fear they will suffer if Klopp opts to protect his stars once the Prem crown is theirs.
MORNING CHELSEA FANS,
The Blues are reportedly in talks with Juventus over a £35m Jorginho transfer with Maurizio Sarri keen to link-up with the midfielder for a third time.
Sarri is a long standing admirer of the midfielder, who used to play under the Italian at Napoli before following him to Stamford Bridge in 2018.
According to The National, Juve are in the midst of hashing out a deal with the Chelsea ace's entourage.
In a blow for the club, Timo Werner will reject Chelsea in favour of signing for Liverpool, German reports say.
The RB Leipzig striker, who has a release clause of £51million, has his heart set on joining the European champions to work with German manager Jurgen Klopp.
According to Bild, Chelsea and United have contacted Werner’s agent to register their interest in a summer move, but the player is said to have no interest in the pair.
Meanwhile, Willian has denied having talks with Tottenham to sign for free next season, according to ESPN.
FOR FOXES SAKE
EXCLUSIVE – A gang have raided the homes of Chelsea manager Frank Lampard and Leicester City’s late owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha.
They stole more than £1million of valuables from billionaire Vichai’s house, left as a shrine after his death.
The heist in Knightsbridge, West London, came ten days after a similar raid on Lampard’s £12million home in nearby Chelsea.
Thieves got away with £60,000 of jewellery and watches belonging to Frank and wife Christine, both 41.
It was the fourth time the ex-England star has been burgled. Details of the break-ins, last December, have never been made public by police.
But Flying Squad detectives are studying CCTV footage of both, with a gang of crooks targeting the rich and famous believed to be responsible.
BLUE IS THE COLOUR
Chelsea are reportedly in talks to sign Ben Chilwell from Leicester.
According to Todofichajes, the Blues are in the market for a new left-back with Frank Lampard not a fan of Marcos Alonso or Emerson Palmieri.
They state that Chelsea are in negotiations with Chilwell over a deal to bring him to Stamford Bridge.
The 23-year-old has contributed two goals and four assists in 28 appearances for Brendan Rodgers's side this term.
ON THIS DAY
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Celebrations #onthisday in 1984 as we secured promotion to the First Division! ? #CFCArchive #CFC #Chelsea
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Former Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas says Kylian Mbappe would fit in better at Real Madrid than Barcelona as he talks up a transfer for PSG ace.
The 21-year-old World Cup winner has long-been linked with a move to the Bernabeu and was expected to make the switch this summer before the coronavirus crisis derailed the mega move.
Mbappe has a deal in the French capital until 2022 and is believed to have recently been offered a staggering £600,000-a-week contract to remain with the Ligue 1 champions.
He told Estudio Estadio: “I, who look at him [Mbappe] as a midfielder, consider him to be one of the strikers I would like to play with. He goes well into space, he has brutal timing. He has a definition, he is hungry.
“He is a boy who wants to be the best. Seeing him play is delightful and he would fit really well at Real Madrid. In Barcelona too, but I think especially in Madrid.”
Chelsea defender Fikayo Tomori has named Liverpool duo Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah as his toughest opponents this season.
He told The Football Show: “I think it all came in the same game, Firmino is probably the most difficult (opponent), along with Salah.
“When I played against Salah, I knew he was going to run and he had such an amazing season the year before. Every time he touched it, I thought 'this is a challenge, this is where I want to be playing'.
“I was thinking this is the chance for me to prove I can play at this level. That Liverpool game at home, we lost but I think I learned a lot from that game.”
OUT OF THE BLUE
Premier League clubs have been given until June 23 to settle the futures of their soon to be out-of-contract stars.
There are 86 top-flight players set to be available on a free transfer come June 30, but the league are desperate for fair ground rules to be implemented surrounding their futures and the integrity of the competition.
Clubs are expected to have three options.
According to The Athletic, the first could see them hand out-of-contract stars a “season 2019-20” extension, taking them until midnight of the day that the campaign finally finishes – with no change in terms.
The second would be to make a normal offer of a multi-year extension, while the third will be to notify them that no offer is forthcoming.
High-profile stars Willian, David Silva and Jan Vertonghen are among the 86 set to be left in limbo.
FAN'S VIEW – Simon Phillips
I feel so privileged to have lived through two of Chelsea’s finest ever eras watching them first hand as a fan.
First of all, the 90s revolution, led by Glenn Hoddle. This was the first real time that we started to see some superstar players arrive at Chelsea from overseas, with the likes of Ruud Gullit, Gianluca Vialli and Ginfranco Zola arriving. These were great times.
Then came the following decade – the noughties. Roman Abramovich bought Chelsea and the revolution turned into a world-beating project.
In came even more top talents from around the globe, with class players such as Ricardo Carvalho, Didier Drobga, and Marcel Desailly just to name a few.
So based on my experiences over the Premier League era, I have selected my Chelsea foreigners Xl, as well as a manager – Jose Mourinho.
Spitting, shirt swapping and team celebrations will all reportedly be banned when Premier League football returns from the coronavirus blackout.
The top flight is pushing ahead with plans to resume matches on June 12 in a bid to finish the season and avoid financial meltdown.
But strict sanctions will be in place in a bid to prevent any new Covid-19 cases among players, according to the Telegraph.
Stars will also be prohibited from sharing water bottles under measures to get football back under way.
The new rules could be in place for up to 12 months as football chiefs desperately try to finish the season.
Real Madrid are set for a mass exodus with reported Man Utd, Chelsea and Arsenal targets Gareth Bale and James Rodriguez on their way out this summer.
According to Marca, the Bernabeu hierarchy have given strict orders for the club to sell before they buy due to the financial uncertainty surrounding the killer virus.
Bale and Rodriguez are just two of five big-earners set to be axed by Zinedine Zidane.
It’s reckoned Paul Pogba, Eduardo Camavinga and Erling Haaland are all on his shopping list.
WHERE WILL HE GO?
Arsenal defender Martin Keown believes that Chelsea winger Willian will shun a move to join the Gunners in favour of a switch to Spain.
The Brazilian international is set to be a free agent at the end of the season after failing to agree a new deal at Stamford Bridge – despite Frank Lampard keen for him to stay.
But Arsenal legend Keown has stated that he doubts whether Willian will make a move across London.
Speaking to talkSPORT, he said: “I don’t see him going to Arsenal.
“I think he’s aiming for Barcelona or Real Madrid. He’s an incredible talent.
“Chelsea will be weaker if he goes but Frank Lampard knows what he’s doing. I’m sure he wants to keep him.”
AR YOU TEMPTED?
Ex-Chelsea star Arjen Robben has been offered a chance to come out of retirement at the age of 36.
The Bayern Munich legend hung up his boots last summer, bringing the curtain down on a 19-year professional career.
But Brazilian side Botafogo made an approach to the Dutchman to see if they can lure him into one final swansong.
Ricardo Rotenberg told Globo Esporte: “There is a risk because he has been out of the game for a while.
“But I enquired and he answered me. He was happy about our interest.
“Leite has helped me there. It's going to be difficult.
“Apart from the fact that he hasn't played for a long time, he can earn four times more at another club.”
AJAX CLEAN UP
Chelsea have lost out to Ajax in the race for Brazilian wing sensation Antony.
The Under-23 international attracted interest from top clubs across Europe with his superb displays for hometown club Sao Paulo.
The 20-year-old's advisor has now revealed the Blues tried to sign him, together with another Premier League club and Germans Borussia Dortmund.
Agent Junior Pedroso said: “We spoke with 12 clubs in total.Borussia Dortmund followed him closely, and even sent a scout to Brazil.
“There was also interest in Antony from two big English clubs, with Chelsea one of them.
“But Ajax were the only ones to make an offer. His Sao Paulo contract ends on June 30.
“We're awaiting the green light, but we plan to fly to Holland on July 5 and Ajax will introduce him two days later. Sao Paulo will get bonus payments if he plays 100 Ajax games, tops the Eredivisie scoring charts, or if Ajax win the Champions League or Europa League.”
Gary Neville believes the Premier League is trying to blackmail clubs into playing again – by threatening them with relegation if they refuse.
Top-flight chiefs will meet on Monday to discuss how best to implement Project Restart and complete the season, currently suspended due to the coronavirus crisis.
A number of clubs at the bottom of the table are said to be against plans to play matches at neutral venues. But they have been warned if they do not agree, the season could be scrapped, which could result in them facing the drop.
Outspoken TV pundit and Salford owner Neville said: “You can call them negotiations between the clubs or you can call them blackmail, whichever way you want to put it.
“There is no doubt we’ve got a divided Premier League at this moment in time in respect of what the clubs want and that isn’t healthy going into this situation.
“When you think about the message from day one in this global pandemic, everyone talked about a social approach, being together and be kind.
“But football is not a nice place at the moment, it is full of self-interest.”They are somehow trying to get to an agreed position but it really is getting dirty behind the scenes – that we’ll relegate you if you don’t play.
“What about health? It is unsavoury the way football is perceived at this moment in time by people outside. The clubs at the bottom were always going to get bullied by the rest of the league into playing.”
UM A TUNE
Chelsea have been handed a transfer boost with Barcelona said to be struggling to sell Samuel Umtiti abroad and a Premier League move looking likely.
Calcio Mercato claims the Frenchman looks set for a Nou Camp exit this summer but teams such as Juventus and Inter Milan are wary of his injury past.
That means Chelsea have a clear run to bring Umtiti to Stamford Bridge.
And Barcelona are even willing to sell the World Cup winner for just £26m.
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