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Chelsea news and transfers LIVE: Ricketts takeover fear, Maddison’s Hazard verdict, Lukaku exit

Chelsea handed double Barcelona boost

Chelsea have been handed a huge boost to their hopes of securing the services of Barcelona starlets Gavi and Ronald Araujo.

According to Marca, the La Masia pair have both rejected new deals at the Camp Nou, as a number of prominent European clubs begin to circle.

Chelsea are thought to be one of those interested in the duo, whose respective deals both expire in the summer of 2023.

Batshuayi set for Chelsea return

Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi could be in line for a surprise return to Stamford Bridge ahead of next season with loan club Besiktas reportedly not considering signing him on a permanent deal

According to DH in Belgium, the Turkish side are not in a position to commit financially to a deal, meaning that he will be back in west London at the end of the current campaign despite an impressive season.

Romelu Lukaku brutal Chelsea transfer decision will force new owners to make defining switch

Cast your minds back to August, when the gleaming London light shone down on Stamford Bridge for an open training session. Romelu Lukaku was pictured holding his new Chelsea shirt with the backdrop of the West Stand behind him. The Belgian had a wide smile, and there was equal excitement over his signing and the heights his goalscoring influence could bring to Thomas Tuchel’s previously profligate attack.

“I just feel more complete.” Lukaku proclaimed in his first interview with Chelsea TV. “I’ve tried to master all the facets that a striker needs, and I just want to keep improving on the small details all the time and keep improving on my strengths as well.

“I just want to try to help the team win and be available for the manager as well as for my teammates. I want to make sure that they feel comfortable and they can lean on me in whatever situation we’re in.”

The overarching narrative felt too neat. Lukaku had been signed by Chelsea in 2011 from Anderlecht but struggled to ever make his mark at the club he grew up loving. A cruel setback in missing the deciding spot-kick against Bayern Munich in the 2013 Super Cup proved to be his final action for the club, being sold to Everton a year later after a successful loan.

Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount agree on ‘crazy’ Chelsea situation amid Abramovich sanctions

Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount both alluded to the fact that the focus from the players has been on the pitch despite the “crazy” Chelsea situation amid sanctions on Roman Abramovich..

Pulisic now faces some crucial matches for the United States national team as they look to seal a place at the 2022 World Cup. And he has issued a similar message to Mount, stating it has been a “crazy” time at the club.

“It’s been a crazy situation, to be honest, but we’ve been able to focus on our game and just worry about playing over there,” he said via the Mirror. “I’m just excited in general to come play with the US national team because I love this group of guys and I love this team and it’ll be nice to have a break, see something a bit different, and then I’ll be ready to go back and finish off the season strong.”

Antonio Rudiger’s transfer conditions and Chelsea’s difficult position amid Man United interest

There are just two months left of Chelsea’s season and Antonio Rudiger remains set to see out his contract at the end of the season. The German international entered 2021/22 as one four Blues players whose deals were set to expire in June, alongside Thiago Silva, Cesar Azpilicueta and Andreas Christensen.

Thus far, only Thiago Silva has put in place an extension, in what has been a masterstroke given what has happened since. As a result of the special licence that Chelsea must operate under to continue their season following the sanctions placed upon Roman Abramovich, the club cannot offer any new contract or complete transfer among a range of other restrictions.

That of course exacerbates the prospect of losing Rudiger. While the parties had not been on the cusp of a deal, it’s impossible to ignore the advantage interested parties may have gained in that moment. Despite a year of speculation, Rudiger has maintained plenty of professionalism at the club and retained the trust of Thomas Tuchel, playing more matches than anyone else in the squad. The 29-year-old has even spoken about his happiness in London.

“I feel great here, I have always said it,” Rudiger told The Athletic. “I think the way I play you can see that I’m happy here. But there are also other people who have to make decisions.”

Chelsea takeover: ‘Chaotic’ Nick Candy and John Terry prediction made amid Raine Group decision

Chelsea’s takeover candidates could reportedly switch allegiances to other shortlisted consortias if they weren’t to make Raine Group’s initial shortlist, with Nick Candy and John Terry given in this example.

With so many buyers part of this big consortias, GOAL’s Nizaar Kinsella states that some of them could switch allegiances if their current group wasn’t to make the final cut for the shortlist. “What you might see in this process as well is that people might move about when preferred bidders are announced,” he said on the London is Blue podcast.

“So, when people get kicked out of the process, people like the Korean group of companies behind Nick Candy might just transfer over to Todd Boehly’s group or to try and elbow their way in with negotiations there. I mean, we’ve seen John Terry wants to do something similar with his True Blue’s consortium.

“So we are going to see a lot of people even after this trying to elbow their way in and there will be a lot of news about that. People who you might have though had been ruled out, might rule themselves back in which is going to be really strange and really chaotic.”.

One example of this is co-owner Stephen Pagliuca who is involved in the running of NBA team Boston Celtics and Serie A side Atalanta. He has lodged his own bid for the club as per Sky News but in that report, it is added that if he wasn’t to make the initial shortlist, then he could seek to team up with another consortium

Petr Cech sends Chelsea duo Edouard Mendy and Jorginho message ahead of World Cup qualifiers

Chelsea’s performance and technical adviser Petr Cech has wished Blues duo Edouard Mendy and Jorginho well for their World Cup qualifier games for Senegal and Italy respectively.

“There is a good chance Portugal play Italy next week in the play-off final. It is difficult to imagine either not having a team in the World Cup, so the pressure is all in,” he wrote on Chelsea FC. “The players are impacted.

Why Roman Abramovich is still allowed to fund Chelsea amid takeover despite government sanctions

Chelsea’s cashflow fears have eased after the government amended the terms of the club’s special licence so the Roman Abramovich-owned parent company Fordstam can transfer £30million to cover operating costs.

Last night the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sports (DCMS) released a statement saying that rules around ticket sales would be relaxed, allowing away fans to attend Stamford Bridge and for Chelsea supporters to attend away games, but omitted another change within the licence that specifies Fordstam can “pay the club up to £30,000,000 in respect of cashflow or liquidity issues.”

That will ease concerns within the club as they await an update from the Raine Group around the selling process. Several prospective buyers were expecting to hear an update from the New York-based bank on Monday but as of Wednesday night were still in the dark. An update could arrive today.

Confirming the ticketing changes which will see money ordinarily intended for Chelsea go to the Premier League, sports minister Nigel Huddleston said: “The government has today made alterations to the licence to Chelsea football club so that fans will be able to access tickets to away matches, cup games and women’s fixtures.

 

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