Benoit Badiashile: Chelsea close in on Monaco’s £35m signing as Graham Potter aims to strengthen defense | football news

Chelsea are in advanced talks to sign Monaco centre-back Benoit Badiashile for a fee of around £35m.

The 21-year-old has won two caps for France.

Former Tottenham recruiting boss Paul Mitchell is sporting director at Monaco, which is open for a sale.

Head coach Philippe Clement has said of the possibility of losing the likes of Badiashile next month: “As a manager, we are always happy when the transfer window closes.

“We’ll see. It depends on the situations, if they are interesting for the club or not. The most important thing for me is that the players have their heads here, and that’s the way it is.”

Chelsea's Wesley Fofana lies injured on the ground during the match against Milan
Chelsea’s Wesley Fofana is a left-sided defender

The 6-foot-4 France international, a left-sided centre-back, has always wanted to play for a Premier League club vying for the Champions League, with West Ham and Sevilla having reportedly already been interested. previously.

Graham Potter is looking for flexibility in his defensive line with Chelsea currently sweating over the fitness of Wesley Fofana after the defender suffered a setback in a closed-doors friendly against Brentford.

Potter said before the game against Bournemouth: “Wesley [Fofana] you just had a little setback which can sometimes happen in the late stage of rehab. It’s going to be a couple of weeks, so he won’t be available for the game.”

World Cup star Josko Gvardiol, 20, from Croatia has also attracted a lot of interest from Chelsea, but Sun claims his growing value and reputation has left the Blues considering more immediate options.

Chelsea transfer plans for January evaluated

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Chelsea manager Graham Potter admits he was impressed with Hakim Ziyech’s World Cup performances in Morocco, confirms Reece James is fit but N’golo Kante won’t return until March.

Analysis by Sky Sports’ Paul Gilmour:

“It’s no secret that Todd Boehly targets the best young players in world soccer as they embark on building a team that can compete for many years to come.

“It is a policy consistent with giving Graham Potter a long-term contract and it is an approach that will become standard practice at Stamford Bridge for years to come.

It has already become apparent with the summer pre-contract of French international Christopher Nkunku, but this January they are looking for a midfielder and a striker.

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Despite being winless in five Premier League games, Stephen Warnock believes Chelsea boss Graham Potter needs more time to turn his fortunes around.

“Armando Broja’s injury has left them light in forward positions and they are the lowest scorers in the top half with just 17. In midfield, N’Golo Kante has been a regular absentee.

“Like Nkunku, Declan Rice is likely to be available for the right price in the summer, but Chelsea won’t want to give up their bid to qualify for the Champions League without a fight. I hope they try to make transfers this January.”

How much has Chelsea spent recently?

In short, a lot. Chelsea were the biggest spenders in the Premier League in the summer, paying £278.4m for 10 new players as the club’s new owners made their presence felt.

At £75m, Wesley Fofana was the Blues’ most expensive purchase, while £63m was spent on Marc Cucurella and £47.5m was paid to Manchester City for Raheem Sterling.

What issues do Chelsea need to tackle?

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The Evening Standard’s Nizaar Kinsella discusses Chelsea’s appointment of Christopher Vivell as their new manager and the changing approach the club is taking to scouting.

There would have been a number of issues that worried Graham Potter as he watched his team’s form collapse in the weeks leading up to the World Cup. However, there are two problems in particular that are hurting Chelsea: a lack of creativity and a lack of goals.

The Blues have an expected goal total of just 15.61 in their 14 Premier League games (only six other teams have registered a lower figure), while they have scored just 17 times in those games. For context, Manchester City have a total xG of 28.09 and have scored 40 goals in the same period.

The fact that no player has managed more than two assists in the league speaks volumes, as do Kai Havertz and Raheem Sterling, who are top scorers with just three goals apiece.

Chelsea weren’t much of a cheerleader under Thomas Tuchel, but they will continue to regress under Potter unless they address their dysfunctional attack.

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