Chelsea latest: Liverpool want Blue, Mou to make big mistake? New Drogba

John Terry 2

All the latest news and views from Stamford Bridge including Liverpool circling for Ash, Eden Hazard, John Terry and more.

Considering Jose Mourinho refused to consider Chelsea as legitimate title contenders in the season just gone, even when they led the Premier League table, it is perhaps a surprise that the Portuguese has already issued a warning to Manchester City and the other challengers for next season's crown.

Mourinho may as well effectively be telling City to enjoy their parade and champion's status while it lasts… as they will not successfully defend the title.

Speaking at the club's Player of the Season awards, Mourinho, as quoted by ESPN, said: "I have great belief in them [the players] and I think next season we can start day one and we can say without any kind of fears that we are there not to fight for the title, to win it. Next season we want to do better than we did. We have to do better, I have to do better, the players have to do better."

One way Chelsea may be considerably strengthened during the off-season is by acquiring Spanish hitman Diego Costa, a player who, depending if you believe the rumour mill, has agreed a deal already - ahead of his club's showing in the Champions League final as Atletico Madrid take on local rivals Real Madrid for Europe's greatest footballing honour at club level.

Former Blue, Ray Wilkins, believes Costa is like City's Alvaro Negredo, he said, as per talkSPORT: "Costa’s a little bit in the mould of Negredo, who was absolutely outstanding before Christmas. He likes to get stuck in, he’s physical and that’s what Chelsea have lacked this season. They’ve lacked an abundance of goals from the forward players.

"If Chelsea had a 20-goal man they would have won the title comfortably. but that wasn’t the case. Hopefully they can address that situation."

While the Stamford Bridge side may be securing the next Negredo, they may also be welcoming the new Didier Drogba as a permanent inclusion in West London, as Wilkins claims Romelu Lukaku must be retained.

"He has to come back to Chelsea in my opinion. This young man is the closest thing you’ll see to the 'Drog' at such a young age. Lukaku scored 16 goals at Everton. He scored 17 for West Brom. He leaves, goes to Everton, then scores lots for them and West Brom nearly get relegated."

Two players may still leave Chelsea, though, as Liverpool are "reportedly leading the chase" for Ashley Cole's signature. Cole's contract expires in seven weeks.

Joining him through the exit door could be Eden Hazard, as Mourinho polarised punditry opinion with his latest offering on the Belgium attacker. Some may regard Jose's comments to be motivational, while others see it as another shove toward a transfer.

When handing Hazard the club Player of the Year award, he said: "Next season we want more from you," in what is a clear reminder of his continuing improvement on his work-rate and defensive responsibility.

As if anybody needed reminding, captain John Terry is a legend.

He has already played 621 matches as a Blue, Terry will now enjoy many more as he agreed a one year extension with the club. His previous deal, like Cole's, was due to run out imminently.

Chief Ron Gourlay said: "We are very pleased John, who is an undoubted Chelsea legend, will continue to lead the team next season, as he has done for so many years with unrivalled achievement. Both Chelsea and John have been clear throughout that we wanted his outstanding career at the club to continue, and it is important the matter has been concluded so soon after the end of the season, allowing us to look forward to and plan for 2014/15."

And finally, here is Hazard with his prize…

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