Jose Mourinho has admitted today that his Chelsea side must sell one more foreign player over the age of 21 in order to meet Premier League rules. The club currently have 18 in their team with 17 the limit. The idea was Victor Moses would be shipped out. However, despite being a Nigerian international Moses has spent much of his life in the UK - and is therefore not considered a foreigner.
Mourinho said of the predicament today:
“We have one problem to resolve, that we have one extra foreign player at the moment and Victor is not a foreign player. Victor is from a position where we have many solutions. We have Hazard, Willian, Salah and Schürrle. Victor’s best position is from the sides, but he is English and at this moment we have one foreign player who has to leave."
So with one foreigner having to go on their way, who could follow Romelu Lukaku, David Luiz and Demba Ba out the exit door this summer?
We look at five potential options for Mourinho to consider:
John Obi Mikel
The Nigerian has been linked with an exit for a while now, and after the arrival of Nemanja Matic in January it is hard to see where he fits in.
Cesc Fabregas' return to Premier League football has also made his chances of first-team football even more difficult.
Galatasaray and Iner Milan have been linked in the past, although their interest appears to have dried up, but Chelsea would surely be able to find suitors for the midfield star.
It would appear no secret that most Chelsea fans would certainly welcome the goodbye of their Spanish dud - but getting someone to buy him is another story entirely.
Chelsea are also down to the three strikers after selling Ba and Lukaku and Samuel Eto'o leaving.
Unfortunately Torres looks set to stay - but he will still be considered an option.
Marco van Ginkel
The Dutchman spent the majority of his first season at Stamford Bridge on the sidelines with a nasty knee injury. Competition in midfield is tough so Mourinho might send the player, who he is believed to be a big fan of, out on loan this season to accommodate his foreign quota.
With Thibaut Courtois returning from his loan spell at Atletico Madrid neither will want to be back-up stopper. However, it looks like the Belgian will get the nod.
Could Chelsea send their veteran stopper away?
Finally, one they might not want to sell, but decide it is the best option should rumours of Atletico Madrid interest prove true.
Chelsea are well covered in his position so a healthy return might make them consider the sale.