As we wade through the boredom of the international break and inch ever closer to the January transfer window, Chelsea continue to move along two parallel narrative threads as far as potential improvements and reinforcements to the squad are concerned.
Antonio Conte's primary objective is firmly on the present and the work and the fight and the constant improvement. But in the meantime, rumors continue to tumble out of SW6 regarding a massive, impactful, big-money overhaul of the squad. In a way, this is probably as good as we can ask for in this situation. The coach concentrates on coaching and playing, the front office concentrate on the business and the money and the market.
So, with that in mind, here's the usually reliable Matt Law with a bombshell or three regarding Chelsea's potential transfer market activities in January and beyond.
Apparently, Juventus and Inter Milan representatives were in London this week, possibly holding preliminary discussions about Bonucci (and/or perhaps midfielder Marcelo Brozovic, who was also fairly heavily linked with Chelsea in the summer). But it's Bonucci who's the big prize and it would appear that Chelsea might be willing to break the bank for him (unlike for Napoli's Kalidou Koulibaly this past summer).
...Abramovich is willing to bid more than £60 million to try to take Bonucci, who is widely considered the best central defender in the world, to Chelsea.
While the report goes on to say that Chelsea would be facing an uphill battle, to say the least, for the 29-year-old's services, especially if Manchester City launch a concurrent bid, we do have the ace in the hole that is Conte and his good relationship with the defender. Possibly complicating things further could be Bonucci's age; he will be 30 by the summer comes, so it would be interesting to see if we might be willing to make an exception to our otherwise steadfast one-year contracts only rule for players aged 30 and over.
One thing seems fairly clear, Chelsea are ready to spend. Whether that will be on Bonucci (and/or Griezmann and/or Aubameyand and/or Morata, as also mentioned in the report) and whether any of that will be successful given our recent and current predicament, remains to be seen.