EPL: 5 January Transfer Rumours to Excite Chelsea Fans
Chelsea enter the January transfer window under interesting circumstances.
Andre Villas-Boas has revamped the team as much as he could without substantial investment.
It is clear that Villas-Boas is at least forcing the issue in terms of attempting to transform the Blues in to a new era.
Chelsea spent about £45 million net during the summer transfer window, but three of those players were bought for the long-term future and would predominantly not have an impact on Villas-Boas's short-term future with the club.
Thibaut Courtois (£7 million) was sent to Atletico Madrid on loan immediately and Ulises Davila (£2 million) was sent to Vitesse on loan.
Romelu Lukaku (£18 million) would have gone out on loan this season had Chelsea not blundered by handing him an appearance for the club, which now makes the possibility of a loan impossible due to FIFA rules stating players cannot play for more than two clubs in the same season.
Raul Meireles (£12 million) and Juan Mata (£23.5 million) have been the two signings able to make an impact immediately.
On that basis, we can assume that Villas-Boas has a good eye for talent that will improve the side and Roman Abramovich will give his young manager a hefty budget.
Whilst not having a perfect start, Villas-Boas is making things happen, calling big decisions and inspiring the team through a tricky patch where the side were in awful form.
Chelsea fans should be excited at the prospect of Villas-Boas further moulding his own Chelsea side and once he has been through another transfer window or two, the Blues way well have completely transformed in to a side capable of challenging again for the Champions League title.
5. Gary Cahill, Bolton Wanderers
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OK, so this signing might not inspire most of the Chelsea faithful immediately on his current form.
But Gary Cahill should not be judged on the last few months where he has had to deal with a dreadful defence whilst also going through another transfer window where a potential move broke down.
If you break down the logic of this signing, things become a lot clearer.
The BBC quoted Bolton manager Owen Coyle when he said, "Regarding Gary Cahill, there has been dialogue between ourselves and Chelsea."
This is providing Chelsea do not show disrespect to the Wanderers, like Arsenal did a year a go with a derisory bid for the England centre-back.
To assure Chelsea fans, such an array of top clubs in the country and across Europe would not be persistently linked with Cahill if he was such a poor player.
Cahill is a decent footballer and is capable of bringing the ball out from the back and initiating attacks, which should give Blues fans an indication on the future Villas-Boas wants at Stamford Bridge.
His faith in David Luiz is another indicator to the fact that long term he will demand a more considered approach in the build up to attacks, beginning with ball playing centre-backs, something John Terry is highly underrated at.
Speaking of which, Terry's partnership with Cahill for England has been relatively promising and would allow Cahill to settle quickly and bring out his full potential, finally, on the biggest stage of European club football.
4. Milos Krasic, Juventus
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Milos Krasic is a signing who could either be marvellous for Chelsea or just plain awful.
Krasic, upon his €15 million arrival to Juventus in 2010, hit the ground running in Serie A with some devastating form as he terrorised full-backs with his tireless running and explosive pace, before sending over a great cross who beating that defender and ending up with a clear sight of goal.
The story has been slightly different 12 months later, and the situation is somewhat unclear, as his form dropped off somewhat toward the end of the 2010/11 season and new Juventus manager Antonio Conte reportedly has irreconcilable differences with the midfielder.
Krasic has been frozen out for the majority of the season and the Serbian will almost certainly depart in January, either on loan or permanently, with Chelsea linked strongly, according to ESPN.
Krasic should get Blues fans really excited as he has the natural width to work on either flank in a direct approach for a high-tempo style.
Krasic, 26 years old, is still in his prime, so he would represent something of a risk-free buy when you consider the fee would not be extortionate due to his disagreement with the coach, who will be keen for his departure.
Given Krasic's age and international pedigree, as well as his good reputation in Russia from his time with CSKA Moscow, the resale value would likely cover most of, if not all of the fee Chelsea would likely have to pay at first, or maybe at the end of the season after an initial loan.
3. Marek Hamsik, Napoli
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Marek Hamsik is somebody Chelsea fans could really get excited about.
The Slovakian attacking midfielder has been on Chelsea's radar for a while and would require a fee upwards of £30 million.
From somebody who watches every game he plays, I can say that Hamsik is quite inconsistent, but the 24-year-old is still to reach in prime and is at a club where he is idolised and therefore in a comfort zone where his place is never under threat.
A move to Chelsea could push him on to the next level in his career and replace the goals that the Blues seemingly lose by benching Frank Lampard much more often from this season onwards.
The Sun reports he is a target for January and Hamsik could potentially fit in superbly in the Premier League with his dynamic style and tendency to thrive on the counter-attacking style deployed at his current club, Napoli.
Hamsik is somewhat versatile as he has shown in recent weeks by being moved from attacking midfield to holding midfield (due to injuries), which would suggest Hamsik could flourish as one of the two more advanced centre midfielders or perhaps the wide-left player, cutting inside on his lethal right boot, in Villas-Boas's 4-3-3 formation.
2. Kaká, Real Madrid
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This has been partly down to injury but also partly down to a lack of opportunity, as the Brazilian seemingly makes an impact whenever selected but fails to be handed a sustained spell in the side.
Chelsea have reportedly been offered the former Ballon d'Or winner for £22 million according to The Daily Mail.
Whilst the logic of this move for a player that will be 30 years old in April is somewhat baffling at first, the move would surely generate a buzz among Chelsea fans.
Kaká would have to hit the ground running in the Premier League, which would be logical a few years a go, but since his string of injuries he seems to have lost that explosive pace he once had while playing with the Rossoneri.
The Brazilian still knows where the net is and his delightful link-up play witnessed in recent weeks when given the opportunity with Real Madrid proves he could offer plenty in a more advanced role perhaps.
Kaká would most likely fit in to the left attack role in Villas-Boas's 4-3-3 formation and have license to cut inside and join up with whoever the lone striker was.
A fascinating idea that Abramovich and surely Villas-Boas will be highly tempted to try for the short-term benefits at least.
1. Edinson Cavani, Napoli
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Edinson Cavani is one of the most desired strikers in Europe.
El Matador has been in scintillating form since joining Napoli in 2010 for £14 million (initially on a loan), scored 46 goals in 66 games.
Chelsea have now been linked with the Uruguayan and would be tempted to pull the trigger in this transfer window in order to weaken their Champions League knockout opponents ahead of their tie next year.
Cavani should excite all Chelsea fans as he is a complete striker who could fit in to both a lone striker formation or a formation with more support.
His is an inspirational figure who is adored by the Napoli fans and his infectious personality would undoubtedly win over the Chelsea fans immediately.
A signing of Cavani's calibre, who could not feature in the Champions League, would at least make Chelsea a foregone conclusion for the top four which is something the Blues must ensure this season, despite being in transition.