Chelsea Transfer News: Latest on Nikola Kalinic and Zlatan Ibrahimovic Rumours

Rob Blanchette@@_Rob_BFeatured ColumnistNovember 29, 2015

FLORENCE, ITALY - NOVEMBER 22: Nikola Kalinic of ACF Fiorentina celebrates after scoring a goal during the Serie A match between ACF Fiorentina and Empoli FC at Stadio Artemio Franchi on November 22, 2015 in Florence, Italy.  (Photo by Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images)
Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images

Chelsea could offer prolific Fiorentina striker Nikola Kalinic a route back to English football, but they have been "urged" by a Premier League player to swoop for Zlatan Ibrahimovic. 

Gazzetta dello Sport (h/t talkSPORT) reported manager Jose Mourinho could tempt Kalinic to leave Italy to boost his failing attack, after the former Blackburn Rovers player's goalscoring exploits in Serie A. 

Kalinic has scored nine times in the league this season, and only sits behind Napoli's Gonzalo Higuain in the scoring charts, per talkSPORT.

The 27-year-old featured for Blackburn over two seasons from 2009, but he was sold to Ukrainian outfit Dnipro. The striker earned a move back to the big leagues last summer, and he has been in sparkling form for the Viola since. 

Chelsea have faced problems in their attack since winning the Premier League last season, and Diego Costa's stock has crashed as a result of his ineffective returns and disciplinary issues.

The Guardian's Dominic Fifield said tensions have grown between the Special One and Costa, and the coach will consider replacing the Spain striker with a new capture in January. 

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 04: Manager Jose Mourinho of Chelsea issues instructions to Diego Costa of Chelsea  during the Champions League match between Chelsea and Dynamo Kyiv at Stamford Bridge on November 04, 2015 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by M
Mitchell Gunn/Getty Images

Radamel Falcao's tenure at Stamford Bridge has mirrored his short time at Manchester United, making a move for an alternative such as Kalinic all the more likely. 

However, Mourinho claimed he will not be asking the Chelsea board for new players in January, preferring to keep his confidence in his current staff, as quoted by Fifield:

I will not ask for any changes. I will not ask the board [for players] in January. I’m happy with the players I have. I trust the players I have. I don’t need to clean the dressing room, and I don’t need to ask the club to spend money in January. I’m not saying I won’t sign anyone. I’m saying I won’t ask the club to do that. I don’t have the right to do it, in my opinion.

The Croatian international would be an excellent stopgap for the Blues, and give them an additional attacking option at a vital point in the campaign.

PARIS, FRANCE - NOVEMBER 28:  Zlatan Ibrahimovic of Paris Saint-Germain in action during the French  Ligue 1 between Paris Saint-Germain and ESTAC Troyes at Parc Des Princes on november 28, 2015 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Xavier Laine/Getty Images)
Xavier Laine/Getty Images

However, Mourinho has been "urged" to move for one of his former talents, after West Bromwich Albion's Jonas Olsson recommended international team-mate Zlatan Ibrahimovic as the answer to Chelsea's striking crisis

The Swede declared the Paris Saint-Germain player could be the perfect capture for the Blues, as quoted by Neil Moxley of the Mirror:

For me, he would be a great signing for any team. He’s coming up to 34 now but you all saw the game against Denmark.

He’s at the top of his game. He could play for any team in the Premier League. He’s that good. He’s the strongest player I’ve been up against in my career. It’s not over for him.

I hope he comes. He has played under [Jose] Mourinho before and the only place where he is not 100 per cent appreciated is in the UK.

Fiorentina's Croatian forward Nikola Kalinic (L) vies with Basel's Czech defender Marek Suchy during the UEFA Europa League group I football match between FC Basel and ACF Fiorentina at the St. Jakob stadium in Basel on November 26, 2015.  AFP PHOTO / FAB
FABRICE COFFRINI/Getty Images

Ibrahimovic would immediately inject glamour back into proceedings at the Bridge, but at 34, he does not offer Chelsea long-term security.

Kalinic would offer Mourinho the chance to take a player who would be more content with a squad role in west London, offering an auxiliary option to the Special One's attack. 

Costa is likely to be given the rest of the season to prove his worth, despite assertions he only has a few weeks, giving Mourinho months—rather than weeks—to find a superstar replacement for the No. 9 role.

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