As last season’s Premier League taught us, Chelsea are just a few world-class signings away from being a perfect outfit.
With class all over the pitch, the Blues just need to tweak their set-up in certain places and their charge for silverware will be back on in the upcoming campaign.
The arrival of Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas have made manager Jose Mourinho’s ambitions loud and clear to the club’s competitors, but his raid on the transfer window isn’t done yet.
The holding midfield role seems to be where the Portuguese manager is devoting his time and attention, and he’s once again looking to La Liga for the solution.
Barcelona midfielder Alex Song is reportedly on Mourinho’s radar, as he looks to fill the defensive-midfield void left by David Luiz and Frank Lampard—according to Mundo Deportivo, via Chisanga Malata of the Daily Star.
Mundo Deportivo claim that Barcelona are willing to let the Cameroon international depart the Nou Camp for £20 million—a fee that appears rather excessive.
Though a stalwart of the Arsenal side when he applied his trade in the Premier League, Song has found chances few and far between with the Spanish giants and made just 19 league appearances last term according to WhoScored.com.
It’s not hard to see why with the central midfield talent that Barcelona possess, and while Song would be a good squad player at Stamford Bridge, a £20 million price tag may see them detach themselves from the deal.
For that same price, Chelsea can reportedly land Khedira—a player at the top of his game integral to both Real Madrid and Germany’s brilliance.
Song does still offer a certain touch of class to a team, though, and it seems that his ability is being wasted at the Nou Camp as he’s forced to play out of position on the rare occasions that he does make the first XI.
Fellow countryman Samuel Eto’o agrees, and recently told beIN Sports that Song must leave Barcelona for his career to progress in any way—reported via George Ankers of Goal.com:
"Song has to leave Barca. At his age, he must play and he could be in the starting XI at any big club."
Though Eto’o’s career is coming to a close, his Cameroon team-mate is just 26 and at the peak of his powers, though it’s unlikely that Chelsea will go through with the transfer at that price.
Song hardly decorated himself with glory at the World Cup in Brazil, being sent off in the group stage against Croatia, and Paddy Power aren’t surprised that no offers have come in for the midfielder:
I can sympathise with Barca's concern about the lack of offers for Alex Song. I'm concerned about the lack of offers for my Nokia 3210.— Paddy Power (@paddypower) July 12, 2014
Song would no doubt welcome a move to Stamford Bridge, as would the next subject of the rumour mill, Mehdi Benatia.
Though John Terry and Gary Cahill formed one of the world’s best centre-back partnerships last term, the 2014/15 campaign could see Terry take his final bow and the Blues will need to think of his possible successor.
There are few better suited to the job than Roma’s Benatia, who has expressed his desire to team up with Mourinho at Chelsea according to Gazetta dello Sport, via Metro.
Metro’s report states that the Moroccan is valued around £30 million by the Serie A side, though he rejected the chance to join Mourinho at Chelsea in his first spell in charge.
Fears over homesickness stopped Benatia from making the switch that time around, but having travelled away from his birthplace, France, he’s now ready to make the move.
Manchester City have been linked to Benatia’s signature, but no deal has been struck just yet, opening the door to the Blues—as BBC Sport’s Mike Keegan reported:
#mcfc have not agreed personal terms with Mehdi Benatia, contrary to reports in Italy.— Mike Keegan (@mikekeeganbbc) July 2, 2014
Those that have seen Benatia play will know exactly why teams like Manchester City are chasing him, as he has all the makings of the next big thing.
Solid in a tackle with expert distribution, the 27-year-old has a sterling reputation in the Italian capital and would undoubtedly bring that to the English top flight.
For that reason, Roma certainly won’t let their prize asset go cheap, and Chelsea will need to dig deep if they’re to follow up on the defender’s comments.
It’s difficult to see Chelsea going the rest of the transfer window without adding some talent to their squad, but it won’t be the glamour of a goalscorer.
Mourinho knows that stability is the key to success, and with a new holding midfielder and defender, Chelsea will have the foundations to let their impressive attacking line do the talking.