Several reports have suggested Barcelona will close in on the defensive signing of Chelsea star David Luiz now that their transfer bin has been lifted by FIFA.
The Brazilian has been linked with a Nou Camp switch for some time, with the Blues knocking back an approach from the Spanish champions last summer.
Luiz’ future at the club has always been questioned because of his robust style of play and how that fits in with the calls for more tactical and disciplined football from the club’s manager Jose Mourinho.
While Chelsea would arguably be better off keeping Luiz because of the benefits he creates, there is a sequence of events which could see him leave Stamford Bridge.
His chances of getting first team football in relation to his two main positions are important.
As a centre back he’s currently a strong back up option to the duo of Gary Cahill and John Terry, which Mourinho seems to prefer.
Should the Portuguese sign a right-back this summer, that would allow Branislav Ivanovic to move back into a central position and with Kurt Zouma due to return to the club, the centre-back reserves seem strong.
That would allow Luiz to consolidate in a holding midfield role for the Blues but there are already two players arguably more effective in that position.
Nemanja Matic has been a revelation since he came back to the club last winter and it’s still unclear whether John Obi Mikel will definitely leave the club after the World Cup.
Should both of those players stay, it increases the pressure on Luiz as he looks to either consolidate as a centre back or a holding midfielder.
Add to the mix the other players who will be coming back to the club from loan deals all over Europe and the idea of guaranteed first team football at Chelsea becomes diluted very quickly.
Mourinho showed with the sale of Juan Mata to Manchester United that he’s not afraid to axe his better and higher profile players and should Barca dangle a £25 million carrot, the Blues may well take it.