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Chelsea Transfer News: Latest Buzz Surrounding Premier League Leaders

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 30, 2014

Paul Pogba is highly sought after.
Paul Pogba is highly sought after.Gregorio Borgia/Associated Press

Those who have watched Chelsea this season will have seen little room for improvement in Jose Mourinho's side, but the Portuguese manager knows the value of constant growth, particularly when rivals will seek to strengthen also. 

Earlier in December, Mourinho told talkSPORT that he will not be looking to change his squad in January. He said: "Our project is to start and finish the season with the same group of players, so there will be nobody to leave and nobody to come in either."

However, the "Special One" is famous for his mind games. Not only that, but he will also be wary of affecting the price of potential targets by publicly declaring interest. With Chelsea set to fight on four fronts for the remainder of the season, there could well be a number of ins and outs in January.

In: Raphael Varane

Tom Sheen of The Independent reports that the French centre-back is one of Chelsea's top targets in January, while Bruce Archer of the Daily Star noted at the end of November that the 21-year-old was unhappy with his amount of game time at Real Madrid.

Having managed the youngster in Spain, Mourinho knows exactly what Varane can bring to his Chelsea side. As the below video demonstrates, Varane is strong (3:51), comfortable in possession (2:06) and dominant in the air (1:38).

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Though John Terry and Gary Cahill have been outstanding in central defence this season, Varane would be a far better option than Nathan Ake or Kurt Zouma, and would represent a phenomenal long-term acquisition. 

Being so highly regarded however, Varane could cost Chelsea most of the £50 million they received for David Luiz.

In: Andrej Kramaric

Per Simon Jones of the Daily Mail, Chelsea are close to agreeing a £7.5 million deal for Rijeka striker Andrej Kramaric. Despite being outbid by Leicester City and facing interest from Juventus, the 23-year-old looks to have chosen Stamford Bridge as his preferred destination this January.

The Croatian has scored 28 goals in 30 games this season, including seven in the UEFA Europa League.

As the below video demonstrates, Kramaric is an instinctive finisher with an eye for the goal.

Though he would likely be behind Diego Costa and Loic Remy in the pecking order, Kramaric would be a quicker and more mobile option than 36-year-old Didier Drogba. If he signs, he may be deployed in the cup competitions. If he can adapt to life in London, Kramaric could help his new club to a trophy early on.

In: Paul Pogba

Juventus wonderkid Paul Pogba is another of Mourinho's targets, per Tom Sheen.

The central midfielder is sought-after by a number of top clubs around Europe, and won the Hyundai Young Player Award at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

Andrew Gibney of Bleacher Report believes that Pogba is destined to become a world superstar. As the video demonstrates, it's easy to see why.

After Nemanja Matic and Cesc Fabregas, Chelsea's only alternatives at central midfield are Ramires and John Obi Mikel. Pogba would give Mourinho the option of playing with three central midfielders or top-quality cover as he rotates the squad with the fixtures piling up.

It would take a huge sum to prize the Frenchman away from the Old Lady, but it would most certainly be worth it. With him, Chelsea's domination of the Premier League could continue for years to come.

Out: Andre Schurrle

One player who could be exiting Stamford Bridge is Andre Schurrle, according to Will Giles of Metro.co.uk.

The German has struggled to make an impact this year, making only five starts and offering little. With the likes of Eden Hazard, Oscar and Willian performing so well, Schurrle is unlikely to break into Chelsea's starting XI.

Andre Schurrle's attacking contribution in the 2-0 win over Arsenal.
Andre Schurrle's attacking contribution in the 2-0 win over Arsenal.FourFourTwo Stats Zone

The graphic above, courtesy of FourFourTwo's Stats Zone, shows Schurrle's negligible attacking contribution against Arsenal earlier in the season. Despite the Blues winning 2-0, the 24-year-old failed to register a shot or create a single chance, and had a passing accuracy of just 60 percent.

With Paris Saint-Germain thought to be interested, Chelsea might be able to recoup some of the £18 million they spent on him in 2013 and fund players coming in. A new start and more game time for Schurrle could reinvigorate his career.

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