All the latest news SW6 including: Manchester United muscling in on Blues target & Manchester City trouble.
West London dominates transfer stories today as there are plenty of rumoured exports and imports ahead of the official opening of the summer transfer window.
It is no secret that Ashley Cole's contract at Chelsea is fast expiring. The Englishman is currently on holiday in California and, when he returns to Britain - after being overlooked in Roy Hodgson's 30-man provisional England squad for the World Cup - he reportedly has eight offers to peruse over as Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint Germain and AS Monaco look to rival a number of Premier League clubs.
Replacing Cole is no easy task as the left back as the former Arsenal defender was widely considered one of the best full backs of the past two decades, however, the Express quote "reports in Switzerland" that suggest Stephan Lichtsteiner - predominantly a right sided player - has been identified as Cole's successor.
Lichtsteiner has returned 24 tackles, 15 interceptions and 45 clearances from 24 starts with Juventus in Serie A, however, as a wing back, he is a clear threat when it comes to attacking contributions as he has supplied 23 goal-scoring chances, eight assists and even scored two goals.
Jose Mourinho could kill two birds with one stone, or, to be more precise, sign two players in one trip as the Portuguese could stay in Italy after any prospective trip to Turin in order to travel to Milan in order to speak with Manuel El Shaarawy, the brother agent of injury-prone Stephan.
El Shaarawy's future is ambiguous, as Manuel said: "Will his future be at Milan? We’ll have to wait and see what the club decides on the market. Stephan is certainly an important player, but there are many changes going on, starting from the issue of the coach."
Chelsea are not the only club linked with the player, though, as Arsenal and Liverpool are also reportedly interested.
On HITC:Sport, we statistically analysed one of Louis van Gaal's priority targets and compared the player to Gary Cahill, a former Chelsea manager underlined van Gaal's biggest problem at Manchester United, van Gaal himself revealed he and Mourinho had been… texting! With Mourinho even saying he was jealous, while, in this opinion piece, the combination of Ryan Giggs and van Gaal can become a success provided they follow the model laid out by the Stamford Bridge club ten years ago.
And finally, there is a bit of a tiswas over Yaya Toure, who apparently does not feel loved because the club allegedly did not wish him a happy birthday - even though they may have done - but the Ivorian, or his representative, may be either chasing a transfer away or an even higher weekly purse.
Either way, it is not a mistake Chelsea have replicated, as they Instagramed the following message and photograph regarding Petr Cech: "A very happy birthday to Petr Cech, who turns 32 today!"