Thursday, February 29, 2024

Chelsea only actively looking to offload one player in January window

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Mauricio Pochettino is happy with his Chelsea squad despite Saturday’s heavy defeat to Newcastle and only wants to offload one player in the January window, according to reports.

The west Londoners were soundly beaten at St James’ Park over the weekend, conceding twice in the space of a minute as skipper Reece James was sent off in a 4-1 loss.

Chelsea are currently sat in 10th place in the Premier League table as a result, 12 points adrift of fourth-placed Aston Villa.

But there is some cause for optimism, with a number of players – such as Christopher Nkunku and Wesley Fofana – nearing returns to first-team action after long injury lay-offs.

Benoit Badiashile was back in the starting XI against Newcastle after a period on the sidelines and Pochettino is inching ever closer towards having a fully fit squad available to him.

As such, he is not expected to make major changes to his squad when the transfer window reopens in January – though there could be a few tweaks.

According to The Evening Standard, Chelsea are exploring potential centre-back signings despite having already spent big on Fofana, Badiashile and Axel Disasi recently.

That will naturally create question marks over veteran Thiago Silva – who made a rare mistake at St James’ Park – with his contract set to expire in the summer.

Chelsea have yet to make a decision over whether to extend the 39-year-old’s stay at Stamford Bridge, though he remains happy and settled at the club – with both his sons in academy teams.

He was previously linked with a return to boyhood club Fluminense – where he also played between 2006 and 2009 after a disastrous spell in Russia – but no decision will be made until the summer.

The versatile defender has not played at all under Pochettino and was surplus to requirements in the summer, though the Blues were unable to find a buyer.

Bayern Munich – now managed by ex-Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel – showed interest over a £25million deal while Nottingham Forest and Tottenham were both circling.

But a hamstring injury coupled with another setback means Chalobah will not be back to fitness until January, prompting suitors to cool their interest, and Chelsea could struggle to offload him.

For more stories like this, check our sport page.

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