Chelsea captain Reece James is set to miss the next four months as he prepares to undergo surgery on his hamstring. Manager Mauricio Pochettino only has one natural replacement in his ranks – Malo Gusto – and the Blues could venture into the winter window to provide support for the 20-year-old. Here, Express Sport takes you through four compelling candidates…
Red Bull Salzburg has been a productive breeding ground for top talent over the past few years, and Dedic is among the latest crop to come through. The 21-year-old has scored three and assisted three more in the Austrian Bundesliga this season.
Chelsea are reportedly keeping track of his progress ahead of the window opening in January, but they certainly aren’t alone. According to The Sun; Arsenal, Barcelona, Inter Milan and Newcastle United have also reached out to gauge whether a deal is there to be done.
Vastly more experienced than Dedic, Elvedi has been a Borussia Monchengladbach regular since 2015, notching almost 300 first-team appearances since. And the 27-year-old is another player reported to be on Chelsea’s radar.
Versatility is a key attribute in the modern game, and Switzerland international Elvedi is able to play in central defence or on the right. But if a direct replacement for James is a top priority, Pochettino may be keen to seek out a more dangerous attacking prospect.
The Inter Milan star has consistently been linked with top clubs for the past two-and-a-half seasons. Marauding up and down the right flank with pace and power has reportedly earned Dumfries admirers at both Manchester United and Chelsea.
With two goals and three assists in Serie A this campaign, the 27-year-old’s productivity shows no signs of slowing. But his services will come at a price, as Inter are set to demand at least £43million before turning up to the negotiating table.