A round-up of news and views relating to Chelsea over the past 24 hours.
Chelsea have been drawn against Sparta Prague in the first knockout stages of the Europa League. Should they progress through that match they will play the winner of the tie between Ajax and Steaua Bucharest. Chelsea are attempting to become the fourth club to win all of the major European trophies. You can read a full run down how the draw went for the Premiership sides in it right here on HITC.
Branislav Ivanovic has said he is pleased to have qualified for the semi-final of the Capital On Cup, and that having missed out on several trophies already this year, Chelsea will take every competition seriously. Chelsea beat Leeds 5-1 at Elland Road to qualify for the last four, where they will face Swansea over two legs for a place in the final.
Rafa Benitez has admitted he is unsure about whether Daniel Sturridge will stay at Chelsea in next month’s transfer window. It had been reported that a deal has been agreed with Liverpool to sign the forward for £12 million, but fresh reports today have indicated this deal might have hit a snag over agent fees.
The Sturridge transfer is expected to be the first move in a busy window for Chelsea, and the first object of business is rumoured to be Radamel Falcao. The indications are that Roman Abramovich will be prepared to pay the £48 million fee demanded for the striker.
Another Chelsea player who could leave in January is Frank Lampard, with Monaco manager Claudio Ranieri looking to bring him and David Beckham to the Ligue 2 side. Monaco are looking set for a return to the French top flight, and with the backing of Russian billionaire they might be active in the transfer market in January.
In other transfer news, Willian has said that both Juventus and Chelsea have made an offer for him, and that he is open to the move if Shakhtar’s valuation of him is met. Tottenham Hotspur have also been linked with the playmaker, who was one of the standout players in Chelsea’s Champions League group.
Having seen the striker first hand at the Club World Cup, Chelsea are reportedly interested in signing Corinthians’ Paolo Guerrero. The Peruvian striker got the only goal in the final of the competition, and his club are so convinced of his importance they have slapped a £30 million asking price on his head.
image: © Tom Cuppens