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Chelsea FC want 20-year-old to replace Cesar Azpilicueta – report



According to The Sun, the Blues are considering signing the 20-year-old Croatian to replace Azpilicueta, the club captain, who is still rumored to be moving to FC Barcelona.

The same story notes that Jules Kounde of Sevilla and  Kalidou Koulibaly of Chelsea FC have already been acquired from Napoli and Napoli, respectively, but Thomas Tuchel wants to bring in a third defensive player.

The same report claims that the Blues manager is hoping to make a deal for Gvardiol with the south-west London club so that Azpilicueta can look for a transfer away from Chelsea FC.

According to The Sun, Chelsea FC is attempting to negotiate a £7 million transfer fee with FC Barcelona for the seasoned defender. This money would be used to pay for the RB Leipzig defender’s transfer.

During his first season at RB Leipzig in the 2021–22 Bundesliga season, Gvardiol made 42 appearances across all competitions, scoring twice.

The 2021 summer transfer window saw RB Leipzig acquire Gvardiol from Dynamo Kyiv, and Chelsea FC’s apparent interest gives an opportunity for the German club to turn a quick profit.

Since making his senior international debut last year, he has one goal in ten games for Croatia.

Koulibaly and Raheem Sterling were already acquired by Chelsea FC during the 2022 summer transfer window, and the Blues are still being connected to a number of additional players as they prepare for a title fight in the upcoming year.

On Saturday night in the United States, the south west London team will play Arsenal in their subsequent preseason friendly.

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Michael Carrick singles out one Chelsea player following the 6-1 defeat, but the national media disagrees




Michael Carrick singled out a Chelsea star following Middlesbrough’s 6-1 defeat, while the national media praised another player.

Chelsea smashed six goals past the Championship team as they booked their spot in next month’s Carabao Cup final.

The Blues trailed 1-0 from the first-leg, but the Premier League side made no mistake in Tuesday’s second-leg.

Chelsea took the lead through a Jonny Howson own-goal, with Enzo Fernandez, Axel Disasi and Cole Palmer scoring before the break.

Palmer bagged his second goal of the night to add his side’s fifth as Noni Madueke completed the rout.

After the match, Manchester United legend Carrick spoke glowingly about Palmer, calling him a ‘real talent’ in high praise.

“He is a real talent. Nice lad as well. Down to Earth and you can see when you come up against him he will go on to have a great career. It’s not nice when you are on the end of it but we can appreciate and respect how good he is,” he said via The Mirror.

Mauricio Pochettino echoed Carrick’s sentiment and hailed the 21-year-old’s ability to play anywhere in the forward line.

“He is a player with an amazing talent. It is a player that understands the game. He has the quality and the talent to see the situation and to read the game in another aspect,” he added.

“He can play from the right, striker or in behind the striker. We try to give him freedom because in this type of game he can find the best position to help the team. For me, [the best part] is when he presses and then the intuition to get the ball back.”

Cole Palmer celebrates scoring a goal for Chelsea. Image: Getty

Palmer, who joined the Stamford Bridge outfit from Manchester City last summer, has been in brilliant form this season, scoring 11 goals in all competitions.

However, the national media picked out another Chelsea star as Matt Law of The Telegraph wrote about Ben Chilwell’s importance.

“What a difference a left-back makes. This was not just Ben Chilwell’s first start since September, it was the first time he started in his preferred position all season,” he said.

“And how Chelsea have missed him. Wearing the captain’s armband, Chilwell looked like he had never been away and sent a message to Mauricio Pochettino to give up on playing him as a winger.”

Chilwell started his first game for four months as he starred on the left-hand side in Chelsea’s victory over Boro.

The 27-year-old has only managed nine appearances in all competitions this season, having been blighted with injuries.

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Victor Osimhen breaks silence on his future amid Chelsea and Arsenal striker transfer hunt




The latest Chelsea and Arsenal transfer news as the striker has been linked with a move to the Premier League after impressing for Napoli.

Victor Osimhen looks over his shoulder during the Africa Cup of Nations group stage match between Guinea-Bissau and Nigeria.
Victor Osimhen looks over his shoulder during the Africa Cup of Nations group stage match between Guinea-Bissau and Nigeria.

Napoli striker Victor Osimhen has said that his full concentration is on helping Nigeria go as far as they can in the Africa Cup of Nations amid talk over his future.

Arsenal and Chelsea are among the teams to have been linked with an interest in the 25-year-old. understands that Chelsea wanted to sign Osimhen in the summer , but Napoli’s reluctance to part ways with the player meant that attention was turned to Nicolas Jackson instead.

Mikel Arteta is likely to want to add to his striking options when the summer transfer window opens. Osimhen has been touted as a potential target.

The striker’s contract with Napoli expires in 2025, meaning that the summer could be one of the last chances that Napoli have to get a decent fee for the player if he doesn’t sign a new deal with the club. That has led to speculation that he could be on the move sooner rather than later.

Osimhen is currently on international duty with Nigeria who have secured their place in the knockout stages of the Africa Cup of Nations. It’s while representing his country that he addressed the talk over his future.

“I have to respect my contract,” he told the Guardian. “Whatever happens in the summer everybody will know. For now I am at the Afcon and I am focused on that.”

Osimhem’s goalscoring record for Napoli makes it no surprise that he continues to be linked with a transfer away from the club. Since joining from Lille in the summer of 2020 he has scored 67 times in 119 appearances for the club.

So far this season, he has scored eight times in 18 appearances in all competitions. The striker’s international record is even more impressive with him finding the net 20 times in 27 appearances for Nigeria, including the equaliser in the nation’s 1-1 draw against Equatorial Guinea in their opening AFCON game.

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Chelsea’s next five fixtures compared to Man United, Tottenham and Aston Villa in top four race




The latest Chelsea news as we take a closer look at the fixtures on the horizon for Mauricio Pochettino’s men as they look to climb the Premier League table.

Cole Palmer celebrates his goal with teammates during the Carabao Cup Semi-Final Second Leg match between Chelsea and Middlesbrough at Stamford Bridge.
Cole Palmer celebrates his goal with teammates during the Carabao Cup Semi-Final Second Leg match between Chelsea and Middlesbrough at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea booked their place in the Carabao Cup final on Tuesday night as they came from behind to comfortably beat Championship side Millwall.

Michael Carrick’s side were leading 1-0 after the first leg at the Riverside Stadium, but Chelsea quickly settled any nerves that may have been around in the stands at Stamford Bridge. An early own goal by Jonny Howson was followed by strikes from Enzo Fernandez, Axel Disasi, and Cole Palmer to put Chelsea 4-0 up on the night at half time.

It got better in the second half as Palmer scored his second of the game before Noni Madueke made it 6-0. Middlesbrough grabbed a consolation through Morgan Rogers in the 88th minute.

After booking their place at Wembley eyes now turn to the upcoming fixtures in both the Cup and the Premier League. Chelsea sit in ninth place in the table, 12 points off a top-four spot, a good run of form could see that gap quickly close before the end of the season.

As well as fixtures ahead of Chelsea, eyes could be on who others around them in the table are taking on. With that in mind has taken a look at the next five fixtures coming up for Chelsea and the other clubs looking towards the top four and the European places.

Aston Villa (H) 26 January (FA Cup)

Chelsea have a break from Premier League action when they take on Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge in the FA Cup fourth round.

Both teams could make changes for the game, given their eyes are likely to be on the race to play Champions League football next season. Chelsea will look to progress in another cup competition after making it to the final of the Carabao Cup.

Liverpool (A) January 31

The most difficult fixture of the run, on paper, with Liverpool currently leading the Premier League table. Jurgen Klopp’s side are four points clear of Man City in second, but Pep Guardiola’s team do have a game in hand.

The reverse fixture back in August finished in a 1-1 draw. Axel Disasi equalised in the first half after Luis Diaz’s opener.

Wolves (H) February 4

Chelsea don’t have long to wait to try and avenge the Boxing Day loss against Wolves. Goals from Mario Lemina and Matt Doherty saw the Blues fall to a 2-1 loss with Christopher Nkunku grabbing a 96th-minute goal.

Wolves have been praised for their performances under Gary O’Neil so far this season. They sit in 11th place, three points behind Chelsea in the table.

Crystal Palace (A) February 12

Crystal Palace are a team struggling to find their form with pressure growing on manager Roy Hodgson. They fell to a 5-0 loss against Arsenal in their last outing, leaving them in 15th place in the Premier League table, five points clear of the bottom three.

Noni Madueke’s 89th-minute penalty saw Chelsea come out as 2-1 winners in the reverse fixture on December 27.

Man City (A) February 17

Another difficult game on paper for Chelsea as Man City look to close the gap on Liverpool at the top of the table. The reverse fixture back in November was a memorable one for fans of both clubs as well as neutrals.

Cole Palmer’s 97th-minute penalty saw the game end in a 4-4 draw. Chelsea came from behind on three occasions to take a point.

Manchester United fixtures (current position 8th, 32 points)

Newport County (A) 28 January (FA Cup)

Wolves (A) 1 February

West Ham (H) 4 February

Aston Villa (A) 11 February

Luton Town (A) 18 February

Brighton fixtures (current position 7th, 32 points)

Sheffield United (A) 27 January (FA Cup)

Luton Town (A) 30 January

Crystal Palace (H) 3 February

Tottenham (A) 10 February

Sheffield United (A) 18 February

West Ham fixtures (current position 6th, 35 points)

Bournemouth (H) 1 February

Man United (A) 4 February

Arsenal (H) 11 February

Nottingham Forest (A) 17 February

Brentford (H) 26 February

Tottenham fixtures (current position 5th, 40 points)

Man City (H) 26 January (FA Cup)

Brentford (H) 31 January

Everton (A) 3 February

Brighton (H) 10 February

Wolves (H) 17 February

Aston Villa fixtures (current position 4th, 43 points)

Chelsea (A) 26 January (FA Cup)

Newcastle (H) 30 January

Sheffield United (A) 3 February

Man United (H) 11 February

Fulham (A) 17 February

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