Jose Mourinho's return to Stamford Bridge got off to a bit of a rocky start, but Chelsea still look to be in good shape to bring home some silverware.
The Blues, fresh off a 2-0 victory over Derby County, are now safely into Round Four of the FA Cup to go with a spot in the Champions League knockout stage and a top-three position in the EPL, just two points behind Arsenal.
Although another treble for The Special One is an incredibly tall task, he has Chelsea in prime position to make some noise on three separate fonts. And if the Blues are able to make a splash during the ongoing transfer period, who knows what could happen?
Let's take a look at the most recent transfer rumblings coming out of Stamford Bridge.
Juan Mata to Valencia on Loan?
Juan Mata was transcendent during the 2012-13 season, scoring 11 goals and tallying a league-high 12 assists in 35 EPL appearances.
But he has struggled to make an impact during this campaign, with zero goals and just two assists in 13 appearances. He has fallen out of favor with Mourinho, and as such, talk of a loan to restore his confidence and get him back on the pitch has heated up.
Returning to Spain makes the most sense, and sure enough, Valencia is reportedly interested, according to Francois Piraux of Spanish newspaper Sport:
Mata, of course, after spending time on Real Madrid's reserve team, made the move to Valencia, where he scored 33 goals in over 100 La Liga appearances, according to Soccerway.com.
This is obviously the early stages of the rumour, but it's an idea that would make sense for all sides involved.
Xabi Alonso Not Going Anywhere
Early on Wednesday, rumours arose that Chelsea were "considering a move to bring Real Madrid star Xabi Alonso back to the Premier League," according to the Daily Express, via FOX Sports.
Not so fast, though.
Per Sky Sports News, the 32-year-old former Liverpool superstar has signed a two-year contract extension with Los Blancos, keeping him at the Santiago Bernabeu until the 2016 season.
Xabi Alonso signs new two-year contract at Real Madrid #SSN— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) January 8, 2014
Football Tweet provided a picture of Alonso signing the paperwork:
Alonso has made just 11 total appearances across La Liga and the Champions League this season, but as a tremendous distributor and playmaker out of the deep midfield position, he would have served as a nice addition for the Blues, especially in terms of depth.
Still, it's not the biggest loss for Chelsea, who have bigger areas of need.
Wayne Rooney Still on the Radar?
One of those particular areas of need? Striker. Although Wayne Rooney has thrived in more of an attacking midfielder role, there's no question that he would improve Chelsea's goal-scoring inconsistencies up front.
According to the Daily Mail, via ESPN, the Blues are prepared to make another run at the Englishman after failing to acquire him over the summer:
Chelsea are readying a £30 million bid for Wayne Rooney if the striker's contract talks with Manchester United continue to stall, according to the Daily Mail.
United are set to meet with Rooney's representatives this month for talks over a new deal, though serious doubts remain over whether an agreement can be reached. David Moyes has even admitted he in unsure whether Rooney will extend his stay at Old Trafford.
Remember my talk of a big splash making Chelsea a contender for a treble? This would be the one.
Where will Wayne Rooney be playing when the January transfer window closes?
Rooney has been downright otherworldy this season, scoring nine goals and tallying nine assists in just 17 EPL appearances. According to Who Scored, he has taken 3.2 shots and delivered 2.4 key passes per match.
You put a deadly scoring option like Rooney in front of Chelsea's midfield, and you aren't going to find many sides able to slow down that attack.
This is a rumour to take with a massive grain of salt at this point, but it's undoubtedly worth paying attention to—if it happened, it would change the entire landscape of European football this season.