An interesting article came from the club's official channels today, where manager Andre Villas-Boas kindly settled some concerning immediate matters regarding the club, including injury concerns and upcoming transfer business. Probably the most significant quote out of the entire article, and perhaps the only black and white piece of solid information:
Regarding what we are trying to do in central defence, we are trying to close a deal [for Gary Cahill]
This is probably the most significant advancement we've had on this deal, and it seems that it's only numbers and negotiation standing in the way of the centre back escaping the mire that is Bolton. You can find more on the Cahill situation, including a look at how this deal affects our other transfers here and Graham's view of the transfer here.
There's a little bit more involved within his statements than just that one-liner, and after the jump the story has been broken down into convenient dot points.
- Jose Bosingwa was apparently replaced in the final ten minutes against Fulham due to feeling a bit of upper leg tightness. So while Salomon Kalou may have been a better option at the time, it seems another defensive injury impacted upon the decision making. Mind you, the sub may have been made anyway, given Bosingwa was letting Kerim Frei do his best impression of Gareth Bale. If Bosingwa's out for any period of time, we can probably expect to see Paolo Ferriera actually earn some of those wages that Chelsea pay for him to sit in the stands with the giant bear otherwise known as Romelu Lukaku.
- It seems Branislav Ivanovic can be pencilled in somewhat to returning to first team action in the FA Cup, where we will playing Portsmouth on the 7th January. The same cannot be said for Jon Obi Mikel, who should take a little longer to recover from his mystery injury. There's an off chance that Mikel might make it back for Portsmouth as well, but it's no real drama if he doesn't considering his principal role now to be as our man-marking holding midfielder. I'd be surprised if Portsmouth had anyone that Oriol Romeu couldn't handle.
- After that innocuous Cahill quote came a more interesting comment from Boas on our transfer activity. It appears he's not planning the major overhaul that many fans desire in the upcoming window. It's probably a good idea for obvious reasons; players are ridiculously overpriced in the winter (case study: Torres), there's a real risk of losing team chemistry and having a ton of new players not gel and there's also a lot less limited time to sign and sell your players.
Bearing all this in mind, there's still not much to take out of this. He may claim low-key movement from Chelsea, but if good players that suit what he's going for come on the market, he'll swoop. Even if we do only move for Cahill and one other player, it's always fun sorting the rumours from the fact....