It's often referred to as "silly season," so with 2012-13 now put to bed, expect a wave of activity across the footballing world as clubs look to strengthen ahead of the new campaign.
With reports of a £100 million war chest to fund next season's assault on the Premier League, Chelsea are once again expected to be among the biggest movers and shakers in the transfer market.
Given their status, the Blues are often rumored to be chasing a string of global stars, with the likes of Falcao, Robert Lewandowski and Edinson Cavani just a few linked with moves to West London already this summer. With Jose Mourinho now confirmed as manager, things are going to get exciting over the coming months.
But who will actually make the move? Bleacher Report will be tracking all the potential ins and outs at Stamford Bridge over the summer, so keep checking back here for all the latest rumors.
LAST UPDATE: JUNE 4
Is Edinson Cavani set to leave Napoli for Chelsea?
The Uruguayan has fuelled the flames of late with his comments that "it would be a pleasure to play for someone like him" when asked about being linked with Chelsea.
As The Guardian reports, Cavani was speaking to Sky Sports News ahead of the Confederations Cup and added: "Chelsea? I don't know if they've made an offer for me but I know that working for a coach like Pellegrini or Mourinho would be a great pleasure.
"It would certainly be a great honour to join one of the illustrious teams that are looking at me because I dreamed about doing that as a child. At the moment, though, I am only focused on Uruguay."
He's dominated the back pages following his unveiling at Stamford Bridge on Monday June 10 and now Jose Mourinho is getting his teeth stuck into recruiting the next generation of Chelsea stars.
Wayne Rooney seems high on his list of priorities, too, with the Portuguese coach being quoted in the Independent as saying:
"I think he [Rooney] is at a fantastic age for a player: maturity, big experience, still young. It's up to him and what he wants, what makes him happy. He's a little bit like me: he doesn't need one more pound in his contract. One more cup won't make a different. Be happy.
"Where is he happy? Where will he find more happiness to have ambition and drive him? I like him as a boy. I wish him well and hope he is happy."
He's one of Europe's most highly-rated young midfielders, but Vitesse Arnham's Marco van Ginkel is telling any clubs interested in acquiring his services they'll need to wait until after the UEFA Under-21s European Championship.
"Chelsea are interested, we don’t deny it," said Karel Jansen.
"But there are more clubs. Ajax had made official contact with Vitesse, but they don’t want to talk with them.
"The situation is that we wait until after the European Championship and then will look for the best step.
"Marco still has two years under contract at the GelreDome, so we don’t know if he will leave Arnhem but there isn’t an agreement right now."
Chelsea have confirmed their full list of released players following the 2012-13 campaign. There are some less familiar faces to Blues fans, with a number of youth team players let go, but the list also includes Florent Malouda, who didn't make one appearance throughout the last season.
The list of released players is:
Abdul Aziz Deen-Conteh
Clubs are required to announce the list every season to the Premier League, including the names of those they will be retaining at the club.
The full list can be found on The Mirror's website.
Jose Mourinho has already rekindled his love affair with Chelsea this summer by being confirmed as the new manager on June 3, but The Sun claims he will also be reuniting with another much-loved figure from his past—this time Wesley Sneijder.
The pair enjoyed a successful relationship at Inter Milan, with Mourinho inspiring Sneijder to produce the best form of his career as Inter won the Champions League in 2010.
Since then Sneijder's stock has fallen with a loss of form and injury taking its toll. The Dutch ace is currently plying his trade in Turkey with Galatasaray, a club he only joined in January. If Mourinho has his way, it could prove a short stint in Istanbul for the 28-year-old.
In his first interview with Chelsea TV after being announced at the club's new manager on June 3, Jose Mourinho intimidated he will not necessarily be spending big this summer to bring success back to Stamford Bridge.
"We have to improve the team, and when I say improve the team people are already thinking about how many millions Chelsea are going to spend,” he said.
“When I say improve the team I am saying improving by work. If after that we can improve the team by buying a couple of players it is fantastic. In the last two years we were struggling in the Premier League."
The Daily Telegraph appears to think otherwise, however, with the broadsheet suggesting Mourinho has eyes for Manchester City’s Eden Dzeko. Benfica midfielder Nemanja Matic and Porto defender Eliaquim Mangala.
You can read the full transcript from Mourinho's forst interview after his Chelsea return at ChelseaFC.com
It had been suspected for months and today (Monday June 3) Chelsea confirmed Jose Mourinho will be the man to lead them next season.
The Portuguese has signed a four-year contract with the Blues and will take charge of the club for a second time, having spent three years at Stamford Bridge from 2004 to 2007.
He won back-to-back titles in 2005 and 2006, while also becoming the first manager to lift the FA Cup at the rebuilt Wembley Stadium.
"It was an easy decision," Mourinho said of his return on Chelsea TV. "I met the boss, the owner, and I think within five minutes after some short and pragmatic questions we decided straight away. I asked the boss do you want me back, and the boss asked me do you want to come back, and in a couple of minutes the decision was made."
You can read the full interview on ChelseaFC.com
Chelsea fans are understandably delighted with the return of Jose Mourinho as coach, but they may be equally disappointed with his apparent eagerness to offload David Luiz.
Reports have rumbled on since the end of the season that the Brazilian could be headed to Barcelona for £30 million (refer to slide 12) and Daily Star (via ESPN FC) is reporting Mourinho will force through his sale.
The Guardian's Rumour Mill is also reporting Luiz's apparent departure, so is it going to happen? Barca have just splashed big cash on one Brazilian in Neymar and it seems Luiz could be their second this summer.
He's not even been officially unveiled as Chelsea manager yet, but Jose Mourinho is already busy in the transfer market it would seem.
The Frenchman has been in Portugal since 2011, signing from Standard Liege. At 22 years old, he is beginning to look like a fine prospect, but with the same report in The Sun suggesting his club values Mangala at £30 million, Chelsea may be put off.
He only made 18 appearances in 2012-13, so if you haven't seen much of the Porto defender, here's a clip from YouTube of him scoring a cheeky goal for Porto.
Madrid are said to be ready to prevent Mourinho linking up with Luka Modric once more at Chelsea.
Reports have been circulating that Jose Mourinho is ready to take a few stars from the Real Madrid team with him to whichever club he joins after leaving Los Blancos this summer.
It's widely expected that club will be Chelsea, but any players harboring hopes of joining the Portuguese at Stamford Bridge will need to rethink their plans according to the Evening Standard.
The newspaper is reporting that any bids for the likes of Luka Modric, Sami Khedira or goalkeeper Diego Lopez will be blocked by Real's top brass, so Mourinho may have to look elsewhere to strengthen Chelsea's squad.
Of those linked with Mourinho and Chelsea, Khedira could be the most disappointed to have a potential move blocked.
As the Evening Standard reported, the German international used his Facebook page to post an open letter to Mourinho, thanking him for his time in the Spanish capital.
"Goodbye Jose Mourinho!," Khedira wrote. "As you know, my dear friends, our coach is leaving Real Madrid at the end of the season. We all respect his decision. I am personally very grateful to him.
“I want to thank him for the opportunity he gave me at Real. I want to thank him for the support he has given me. He has always had my back, sometimes because I received criticism from the press!”
His expected return to Chelsea will be announced on Monday according to the Daily Express, but Jose Mourinho it appears is not content to make headlines just for that reason.
The Gunners have long been linked with the 23-year-old, but with Edinson Cavani and Falcao proving out of reach, the Blues have turned their attention to the Montenegrin.
Arsene Wenger and Mourinho had a fiery relationship during the latter's spell in charge at Stamford Bridge, so if this move comes off, it could be a case of business as usual between the pair.
He was reportedly a long-term target of Chelsea's during his time at Tottenham Hotspur, but is this summer the year Blues finally get their hands on Luka Modric?
The Mirror suggests that is the case, with Chelsea reportedly eager to bring the Croat to West London if Jose Mourinho returns as manager.
Modric has endured a mixed season in Spain since his move from the Premier League last summer, so is expected to welcome a return to England.
But as one midfielder is rumored to be arriving, another will be departing Chelsea. Florent Malouda has spent the season training with the club's youth team after being marginalized and has spoken to Canal+ (via Sky Sports) about his relief at finally be leaving Stamford Bridge.
"It is nice. I am relaxed and available for my comeback," he said.
Ivanovic (right) scored the winning goal in Chelsea's 2013 Europa League victory.
With all the talk of players signing for Chelsea, it's easy to forget that some of the Blues' stars are coveted by clubs across Europe.
After another fine season in West London, Branislav Ivanovic has caught the eye of big-spending Monaco.
The club recently returned to Ligue 1 and have wasted no time in snapping up Joao Moutinho and James Rodriguez from Porto to bolster their ranks, spending a cool £60 million.
In late May The Mirror reported Chelsea were chasing six players, including Malaga's talented attacking midfielder Isco.
The newspaper suggested the 21-year-old was on Jose Mourinho's wish list as he looks to make the Blues a title-winning team once more, should he return to Stamford Bridge, but the club could have their work cut out.
According to Metro, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City are also admirers of his talents and that can spell only one thing—a bidding war of epic proportions.
If Chelsea are serious with their interest, Roman Abramovich will not want to lose out to City, meaning Malaga will be doing their best to hike up the price for one of their most-prized possessions.
They've been battling for supremacy on the pitch in their end-of-season tour of the United States and now it seems Chelsea and Manchester City will be going head-to-head in the transfer market this summer in an attempt to lure Zlatan Ibrahimovich to the Premier League.
You can hardly blame them either, given the fact the Swede has won league titles in Holland, Italy, Spain and now France with Paris Saint-Germain this season.
It seems wherever he goes, league titles follow and the Blues and City are certainly desperate to get their hands on the Premier League trophy once more.
The Daily Star is reporting the apparent interest of both clubs, but it seems Chelsea are keeping their options open with the likes of Galatasaray front man Burak Yilmaz (via Metro) and Bayern Munich's Mario Gomez (via Daily Mail) also being linked with big money moves.
Could it become a case of "Real Chelsea" at Stamford Bridge this summer?
It seems the worst kept secret in football that Real Madrid Madrid manager Jose Mourinho will be returning to West London to take charge of his beloved Blues for a second time. And not only have rumors surfaced that the club has its eyes fixed firmly on Cristiano Ronaldo (via Huffington Post), but another of Real's Portuguese stars, Fabio Coentrao, is also being mentioned as a potential new arrival.
The 25-year-old chose Real over the Blues when he signed from Benfica in 2011, but having announced his desire to leave the Bernabeu when the season ends next weekend, he may well be regretting the day he spurned Chelsea's advances.
He has been one of the revelations of 2012-13, but if Chelsea want to get their hands on Southampton's 17-year-old left-back Luke Shaw, they're going to have to fight for him.
The Daily Mail is reporting that new Manchester United manager David Moyes is preparing to go head-to-head with Chelsea in a bid to capture Shaw, who has seen his stock rise considerably in his debut Premier League campaign.
Both clubs could be wasting their time courting the youngster, however. The Daily Telegraph believes Shaw wants to remain a Saint for the next couple of seasons at least as he continues his development.
David Luiz was one of Chelsea's star players last term, but it seems Jose Mourinho is not impressed by the Brazilian.
The Daily Mail has reported that, should Mourinho be appointed Blues manager this summer, he will look to off load the defender. On the surface, it would seem a strange judgement call from the Portuguese manager, but Chelsea would be expected to make a considerable profit on the £21 million they paid Benfica for Luiz in January 2011.
Where Mourinho would invest that cash remains to be seen, but Luiz will not be short of potential new clubs if it does indeed come to that.
Earlier this month (May) Barcelona were linked with a £40 million bid for Luiz (via the Daily Mail).
Could Wayne Rooney be the man to bring the Premier League back to Chelsea?
It's no secret that Wayne Rooney has asked to quit Old Trafford this summer, with outgoing Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson revealing he had spoken to him about a move away from the club.
The biggest question, however, is where he will end up if he does indeed depart?
Given the money required to prise Rooney from United's grasp, there are only a select few with the funds to back up any interest. Chelsea would be one of them, and according the The Mirror, they've already approached the Red Devils and asked them to name their price.
Such is their dislike of Rooney, the Daily Star has reported, however, that Chelsea fans are threatening to treat the 27-year-old the way they did Rafa Benitez when the interim boss was appointed in November. Since then, the Spaniard has regularly been booed and jeered at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea need a striker to bolster their ranks up front, so watch this space as to whether Rooney will become that man as this is one transfer that promises to roll on for much of the summer.
He's just finished up the season with 23 goals in all competitions, but it seems that's not enough for Fernando Torres to guarantee a place at Stamford Bridge next season.
On Sunday, The Sun reported Chelsea were willing to cut their losses with the striker who has endured a difficult two and a half years in West London.
The Spaniard himself clearly has other ideas, however.
Torres thinks he will be wearing Chelsea blue in 2013-14 after declaring to Goal.com that he hopes the new campaign "can be better." They're clearly the words of a man with no intention of moving on and with over 20 goals to his name, why should he?
What Chelsea are exactly thinking remains to be seen, but a lot will depend on the strikers they can attract to Stamford Bridge.
To date Chelsea have been linked with Falcao, according to The Express, Edinson Cavani, as per The Guardian, Robert Lewandowski, as reported by ESPNFC via the Daily Star and also Bayern Munich's Mario Gomez, according to the Daily Mail.
Chelsea wowed audiences in 2012-13 with some of their attacking play but were often let down by defensive frailties, especially in the defensive midfield position.
The Blues have a number of talented youngsters coming through in that area, but in the meantime they are expected to shore up their presence in the middle of the park with some more experienced heads.
The La Liga season runs until June 1, so don't expect any movement on these rumors until after that date.
It was football's worst kept secret.
As if we didn't know already, Real Madrid announced on Monday, May 20, that Jose Mourinho would be leaving the Bernabeu come the end of 2012-13.
It now paves the way for the Portuguese to return to Stamford Bridge and succeed interim manager Rafa Benitez.
Reports in the media have long been a frenzy where Mourinho's potential return to Chelsea was concerned and they have only been cranked up a notch since Real's announcement.