Is this striker the perfect answer to Chelsea’s Costa crisis?

Much has been made in a short period of time over the reports that Diego Costa had a bust up with fitness staff and manager Antonio Conte after an apparent £30 million-a-year offer came in from Chinese Super League side Tianjin Quanjian. It would be a huge blow for the Premier League leaders if they were to lose their top goalscorer, but could Atletico Madrid’s Antoine Griezmann be the answer for Chelsea? Lewis Addley explores…

Given how the transfer news surrounding Diego Costa’s future is intensifying with each passing day, it would not be a surprise to see the Spaniard depart from the capital and become the third player in the last few months to leave Chelsea for the Chinese Super League.

The purchasing power of the CSL has been well documented and the money being spent by clubs in the league is providing some of the most astonishing transfer fees and wages the game has ever seen.

So if Chelsea were to lose Costa, they may well revisit one of their favourite shopping destinations in the form of Atletico Madrid. Chelsea and Atletico have a strong link with the likes of Thibaut Courtois, Filipe Luis, Tiago Mendes, Fernando Torres and Costa himself having all played for both clubs.

So why would Griezmann consider a move?

It’s no secret that Antoine Griezmann is a man in high demand. He could potentially be swayed with the appeal of playing in the Premier League and the wages Chelsea could offer him for his services. The Frenchman is one of the deadliest strikers in Europe and he would certainly fit the bill to fill a potential void if Costa departs.

The 25-year-old forward netted an impressive 32 goals in 54 games in all competitions last season and he could be tempted away from the Spanish capital considering Atleti are underperforming. He has only netted seven goals this season and a fresh start may suit Griezmann, while also providing Chelsea with a world-class replacement for Costa.

Griezmann’s national teammate N’Golo Kante could also play a part in a potential move. Kante was one of the most sought after midfielders after Euro 2016 and he chose Chelsea ahead of many of Europe’s elite clubs. While wages always seem to play a big part in any high-profile transfer, an appeal for many to join Chelsea is the lifestyle and factor of living in London.

Chelsea are being tipped to win the Premier League this season and are sitting in a comfortable position at the top of the table, however if Costa is to depart the balance of the side could well be rocked. It could play into Griezmann’s hands to come in as a replacement and, providing he hit the ground running, he could continue where Costa left off and fire the Blues to the title.

Why could a January move for Griezmann be unlikely?

January is a difficult time of the year for a player to make a high-profile move. It is the halfway point in the season and it can be tough to settle in, especially without a preseason, getting to know teammates properly and coming into a seemingly settled dressing room.

Chelsea have previous with January transfers not having the desired effect. Though Fernando Torres was a success at the club in terms of the trophy haul, his goalscoring form never hit the dizzy heights from earlier in his career. The burden of carrying a hefty price-tag of £50 million was something Torres struggled to shake off and given the current state of the market, Griezmann would almost certainly be upwards of that figure.

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Griezmann has said as recently as this month that he is happy at Atleti. He has Champions League football to look forward to upon it’s return and there is still plenty for him to prove in Madrid.

Costa is yet to leave Chelsea. No official comment has been made from Costa or his agent, so he may well stay at the club at least until the end of the season, when a move for Chelsea to find a replacement would be more favourable.

Do you think Costa will leave Chelsea and is Griezmann the sort of striker who could replace him?

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Feature: Chelsea dominating transfer headlines but are they panic buying?

Chelsea‘s below-par start to the new Premier League season has resulted in transfer news and rumours flying around about a number of players.

The Blues have today signed FC Barcelona’s Pedro Rodriguez after Jose Mourinho swooped in and stole an almost done-deal from rivals Manchester United.

The 28-year-old winger made it clear he wanted to leave the Catalan giants this summer after a lack of playing time and although terms had initially been agreed between United and Barca, it is Chelsea who have landed the experienced Spanish winger.

With Eden Hazard, Willian and Juan Cuadrado all having featured already this campaign, you have to ask whether there is room for Pedro and whether one of these three will be on their way out of the club in the next two weeks.

Foot Mercato have reported that Willian has been offered to either Paris Saint Germain or Bayern Munich, which would be a surprise given he appears to be one of the first names on the team-sheet for Mourinho.

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The John Stones saga also continues. Chelsea have reportedly had a third bid of £30 million rejected for the 21-year-old Everton defender, with a fee of nearer £40 million rumoured to be required.

It remains to be seen whether Chelsea will make a final offer to tempt the Englishman away from the Toffees but Mourinho wants the player and he will do what he can to get his own way with a short time left to go in the transfer window.

With John Terry’s position in the side uncertain ahead of the weekend clash with West Brom this will be a story with more to come. Whether or not Chelsea need the youngster is another question, with Terry, Gary Cahill, Kurt Zouma and Branislav Ivanovic all options for Mourinho at centre-back.

Ivanovic could find himself out of the squad for this weekend’s upcoming game, with new signing Baba Rahman tipped to start at left-back, pushing Cesar Azpilicueta back to his more natural right-back slot.

The odds have been slashed for Paul Pogba to join Chelsea before the window closes. This could be a clever manoeuvre from the bookies, given Chelsea’s late movements in the window leading people to believe they are willing to pay big money for players that will help them defend their Premier League title.

Juventus are reportedly holding out for at least £70 million for their highly sought after talent and having already lost many star players this summer, a move away for Pogba looks unlikely.

With a whole host of attacking midfield options at Chelsea already, Pogba would no doubt have to dislodge another player from a starting position. With Oscar occupying the number ten role he could more than likely be the player axed if Pogba was to join, with Juve linked with the Brazilian throughout the window.

Talk of Cuadrado going to Juventus is also ongoing but the rumours are that he would be going on loan to the Old Lady and would not be included as part of a potential Pogba deal.

It is going to be a very interesting and busy end to the transfer window for Chelsea if we are to believe the rumours and Mourinho’s side could be the ones to watch very closely as they look to make up for their worst start to a season since 1998 with some late transfer excitement.

Chelsea and Bayern to battle for Atletico Madrid superstar – report

Chelsea have reportedly joined Bayern Munich in the race for Antoine Griezmann but Atletico Madrid don’t intend to sell their prized asset, reports Spanish media outlet AS.

The Frenchman joined Atletico last summer from Real Sociedad for £24 million, signing a huge six year contract, and has been a revelation after netting 22 times in 37 league games.

Bayern were reported to have sent scouts to watch Griezmann in the Champions League last 16 game at Bayer Leverkusen, and have been impressed with what they see. The German giants are reportedly willing to match his huge €65 million release clause as they will eventually look to replace wingers Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben.

Chelsea also have the financial firepower to complete a deal but would need to sell a couple of players first to keep within the Financial Fair Play regulations.

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Atletico coach Diego Simone sees Griezmann as part of a new wave of talent they can’t afford to lose, including teammates Koke, Diego Godin and goalkeeper Jan Oblak. Chelsea have also been linked with Koke and Godin.

Griezmann is said to be happy in the Spanish capital after spending the last decade in Spain, though he could double his salary with a move to the Premier League or the Bundesliga.

If Chelsea or Bayern meet the release clause, Atletico are powerless to stop a deal from being completed. With the European Championships in France next season, Griezmann is likely to be part of his country’s attack so delivering strong performances on a weekly basis as he has this year is a must for the player.

Jose Mourinho is thought to be optimistic a deal can be struck, having negotiated deals with Atletico last summer over the signings of Diego Costa and Filipe Luis, who both joined Chelsea.

Could Antoine Griezmann leave Atletico Madrid this summer? Would a move to Chelsea make sense?

Chelsea and City set to battle for ‘next John Terry’ – report

Chelsea and Manchester City are considering an offer for Everton‘s John Stones as a long-term investment, according to the Daily Mail.

Stones has been under the watch of Chelsea scouts for the past 18 months and is reportedly seen as a long-term replacement for captain John Terry.

The 20-year-old central defender has impressed over the last two seasons and is tipped to be one of the best in the country as he continues to develop.

Chelsea’s search for John Terry’s replacement may seem premature given that he has played every minute of their Premier League season, but they will need to move quickly for Stones if City are interested.

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This summer could be a good time for Chelsea to sign Stones as his development would be helped by Terry. The former England captain has a formidable partnership with Gary Cahill, who has gone from strength-to-strength since signing for the club in 2012.

Manchester City are targeting younger British stars to meet homegrown quota regulations, and Stones is an ideal candidate. The Englishman has four caps and has become one of the first names on the team-sheet for Roberto Martinez.

City’s defence has been questioned this season as they failed to put up much of a challenge for the Premier League title and Manuel Pellegrini is expected to strengthen his options this summer.

Everton are not looking to offload Stones but with the financial power of Chelsea and City they could well be forced into accepting bids upwards of £20 million for their starlet.

Stones has been likened to Terry for his no nonsense and calm approach. He netted his first Everton goal in their 3-0 win over Manchester United last month with a powerful header.

Will Stones move on this summer? Could he be the next John Terry?

Chelsea and Liverpool to battle for Premier League star

Manchester City striker Edin Dzeko is wanted by Premier League rivals Liverpool and Chelsea, with City reportedly ready to listen to offers.

It has been suggested that a fee of around £25 million would be commanded to sign the Bosnian, as he still has three years left on his current deal, and Liverpool are keeping tabs, according to the Daily Mail.

Although the Mirror have suggested that Chelsea are also in for Dzeko, and will try to sign him for as little as £10 million as they look to replace Didier Drogba.

Dzeko joined City from Wolfsburg in January 2011 for a reported £27 million fee. He has scored a total of 50 goals in 130 appearances for City in the Premier League.

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Dzeko was reportedly a target for many European clubs last season with Juventus, Inter Milan, Borussia Dortmund and former club Wolfsburg all showing interest.

After enduring a tough season where he has only started 11 times in the Premier League, scoring only four goals, it looks likely that he will leave.

The signing of Wilfried Bony in January pushed Dzeko further down the pecking order and he will need to move elsewhere to get regular first team football next term.

Should Manchester City sell Edin Dzeko this summer, and if so, which club will he move to?

Chelsea suffer blow as star is open to joining Arsenal or United

Chelsea have suffered a huge blow as Petr Cech‘s agent has revealed his client is open to a move to Arsenal or Manchester United.

Both Arsenal and United are expected to dip into the transfer market for new goalkeepers. Arsene Wenger could seek an upgrade for David Ospina and David de Gea’s Real Madrid saga is still ongoing.

Cech would be a great addition for either club, having won almost every trophy available during his eleven year chelsea career.

Jose Mourinho is hoping to keep hold of his back-up ‘keeper but it appears the decision will be down to owner Roman Abramovich.

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Cech still has one season to run on his current contract and if he stays with Chelsea he will more than likely move on for free. If the Premier League champions cash in on the 32-year-old shot stopper it is estimated his services would fetch around £10 million.

Paris Saint Germain, Real Madrid, Inter Milan and Besiktas are all reportedly interested in the Czech Republic number one and Mourinho will hope his star will opt for a move away from one of the clubs rivals.

Will Cech leave Chelsea? Will he be allowed to move to one of their rivals?

Juventus line up Chelsea man to replace £70m City target

Juventus are eyeing Chelsea‘s Ramires as a potential replacement for Manchester City target, Paul Pogba, according to Gazetta dello Sport.

Ramires has made 23 appearances in an injury-stricken season and when fit has struggled to break into the first team as a result of Cesc Fabregas and Nemanja Matic’s consistency in the holding midfield role.

Pogba is heavily tipped to move on this summer and City have been eyeing the highly sought after midfield powerhouse, though Chelsea, Manchester United, Paris Saint Germain and Real Madrid are all chasing the 22 year old.

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Ramires is valued at £22 million by transfermarkt.co.uk and could be one of Mourinho’s players to sell to generate funds to freshen up his squad.

City will need Juventus to have a replacement lined up for Pogba if they are to stand any chance of securing his services.

Ramires is out for Chelsea’s remaining two games through injury and could have played his last game for the club if the rumours are true.

Will Ramires play a key role in Manchester City’s chances of signing Paul Pogba this sumer? 

Arsenal dealt HUGE blow as target eyes Real Madrid move

Arsenal have been dealt a huge blow in their pursuit of Petr Cech as he is ready to join Real Madrid, according to The Sun.

Madrid have been heavily tipped to secure the signing of Manchester United shot stopper, David De Gea, but if the Spaniard snubs Los Blancos, Cech is willing to step in.

The Chelsea ‘keeper is unhappy with playing second fiddle to Thibaut Courtois and does not want another season on the sidelines.

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Jose Mourinho does not want to lose his number two, who has performed as good as ever in the games he has been called upon in the Premier League this season, with five clean sheets in six games.

Cech would be considerably cheaper than De Gea, with talk of any transfer for the Spaniard costing upward of £30 million.

Chelsea are keen for Cech to stay but have not ruled out his departure, although Mourinho doesn’t want him to move to any of their Premier League rivals.

Cech is rated at £10.5 million by transfermarkt.co.uk and Chelsea risk losing the Czech Republic international on a free next summer when his contract expires if they do not sell him in the coming months.

Will Petr Cech leave Chelsea this summer? Do Arsenal have any chance of signing him?

United set to HIJACK move for £36m-rated Chelsea target

Manchester United are ready to submit an offer for Lazio’s Felipe Anderson, according to The Express.

United have sent scouts to watch the 22 year old on a number of occasions this season and Chelsea are reportedly also interested in the Brazilian.

Reports suggest that United are readying a £36 million bid for the midfielder who they see as a replacement for flop, Angel Di Maria.

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Anderson has scored ten goals in 30 Serie A appearances this season and has played in a key role in Stefano Pioli’s side.

Louis Van Gaal could provide Anderson with more first team football than Chelsea as he is set for another summer revamp of his United squad.

Jose Mourinho has claimed he will be doing ‘a little’ business in the summer transfer window, but with his midfield looking settled, regular playing time seems unlikely for any addition to his squad.

Will Felipe Anderson sign for Manchester United? Do Chelsea need him?

Chelsea plotting SHOCK £10m move for City superstar – report

Chelsea are set to make a surprise summer move for Manchester City’s Yaya Toure with the Ivorian heading for the exit door, according to the Daily Express.

The City star is “90 per cent certain” to leave the club this summer, according to his agent Dimitri Seluk, and he has reportedly confirmed that Chelsea have shown an interest.

Jose Mourinho is thought to be an admirer of Toure, who scored twice in City’s 4-2 win over Swansea on Sunday, and the Blues could make a shock £10 million for the powerful midfielder.

Inter Milan have also expressed a keen interest in signing the 32-year-old star as a reunion with Roberto Mancini looks to be a real possibility.

All signs point towards a City exit and the club will use the transfer fee and his huge wages in excess of £200,000-a-week to rebuild the squad ahead of next season.

The Citizens have fallen short of Chelsea this season, with the Blues winning the title for the first time in five years, and a move to Stamford Bridge for Toure would certainly hurt City fans.

Mourinho will look to strengthen his Chelsea squad this summer with quality signings as they look to dominate English football for the long run, and Yaya Toure could be one of the first names on the Portuguese coach’s shortlist.

Would Yaya Toure leave Manchester City to join Chelsea? Would he be a good signing for Chelsea?