According to The Times’s exclusive, at the top of Antonio Conte’s wishlist for January are no less than two wing-backs: West Ham United’s Michail Antonio and 1.FC Köln’s Jonas Hector. Neither name is entirely new when it comes to the Chelsea rumor mill, with Antonio linked just last week and German international Jonas Hector linked back in the summer before Chelsea opted (settled?) for Marcos Alonso.
The story with Antonio doesn’t sound any more promising than it did last week — we “may struggle to prise” him away apparently — but Jonas Hector is deemed “a more realistic” target by The Times. Considering that he’s actually a wing-back, unlike Antonio who may be versatile but specifically said he doesn’t like playing in that position, and considering Chelsea’s greater need on the left than on the right (Ivanović, Aina, and even the ambidextrous Pedro all capable of backing up Moses in various situations), that makes this perhaps a promising rumor.
Then again, Hector did sign a new five-year contract this summer and was even made club captain after rumors linking him to Liverpool and Chelsea and Barcelona and a few others. If all that’s done is buy him a six-month reprieve from the noise, then perhaps he is indeed a more realistic get. Can’t stop the rumor mill after all, you can only hope to contain it!