Chelsea are Premier League champions; but Antonio Conte is under no illusions about the need to strengthen his squad significantly this summer.
A small core of proven performers returned the Blues to the pinnacle of English football; but more quality options in all areas are needed if they are to maintain their position and return to the Champions League as genuine contenders.
Here are the five Chelsea players most likely to be not be around this season coming.
6. Diego Costa
Without Doubt Diego Costa will surely leave Chelsea, The Spain International has revealed that he already got the message from the manager Antonio Conte, telling him that he had no place in his team next season.
AC Milan are keen on the Brazil-born forward but his £9million salary might price them out of the market.
5. Nemanja Matic
Despite playing a key role in two title-winning Chelsea teams in three seasons and scoring that FA Cup goal against Tottenham; Matic doesn’t seem to be assured with staying at Stamford brigde.
Monaco powerhouse Tiemoue Bakayoko is at the top of the Premier League champions’ wish list to pair with N’Golo Kante in central midfield, and his arrival would not be good news for Matic or Cesc Fabregas.
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho is reportedly keen and isn’t short of a transfer budget.
4. Ruben Loftus-Cheek
Conte insists that Loftus-Cheek still has “good prospects” to be a Chelsea player; but a lack of minutes and persistent back problems have stalled the development of a youngster once widely regarded in academy circles to be ahead of Dele Alli.
He surely is needs to be loaned for sometime and get to pay regularly and he will solely be so amazing.
3. Michy Batshuayi
Signed for £33 million from Marseille last summer; Batshuayi quickly endeared himself to Chelsea fans with his raw potential but he never managed to earn the trust of Conte.
Chelsea are looking to bolster their attacking options this summer regardless of whether Diego Costa stays or goes and if they succeed, expect to see Batshuayi continuing his development at another club next season.
Kenedy should have been well equipped to challenge Marcos Alonso for the left wing-back position in Conte’s 3-4-3 system after being recalled from an entirely unproductive loan spell at Watford in January.
Eventually then Alonso proved a consistent and durable performer in his first season back in the Premier League; but Kenedy’s failure to make even the substitutes’ bench for most of the second half of the campaign.
1. Kurt Zouma
Central defence is another area in which Conte is looking for significant upgrades and Virgil van Dijk, Jerome Boateng and Leonardo Bonucci are all on the list of potential targets.
Which means opportunities will be even more little for Zouma; who has completed 90 minutes just four times since making his first-team return from a serious knee injury in January.