Andy Gray speaks about the future of out-of-sorts Chelsea defender

Football pundit Andy Gray doesn't believe Gary Cahill's recent drop in form spells the end of his Chelsea career.

Recent reports coming out of The Daily Mail claim that Gary Cahill's future could be in jeopardy as Jose Mourinho is looking to revamp his Chelsea defence next summer.

The story adds that the Portuguese manager has lost faith in the 29-year-old England international and has earmarked Raphael Varane, Jose Gimenez and America Laporte as potential replacements.

One man who isn't taken in by these reports though is legendary Scottish striker Andy Gray, who says the under-fire defender may just need a break, and that he would be very surprised if Chelsea looked to 'discard' him.

Gary told Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast: "I think Gary has had a couple of bad games, I thought he was poor in the local derby against Spurs, then he had another pretty awful game (against Bradford). I wouldn't say that suggests that's the end of his Chelsea career.

"Maybe he needs a breather, maybe he needs a break. That can happen in a footballer's life, sometimes you play a lot of big games, you might need dropping out to take the pressure off for a while.

"I think Gary is good enough to come back but they have the ideal players to put in there, Azpilicueta right-back, Filipe Luis left-back, Ivanovic next to Terry, not a problem for a month.

"I would be very surprised if they were looking to discard him as quickly as this."

Cahill has had a disappointing January at the heart of the Blues defence and his performances are highlighted by the humiliating 5-3 loss to Spurs and the 4-2 defeat to Bradford City.

The former Villa defender was charged with leading the back line against Bradford in the absence of John Terry, but failed to live up to his responsibilities and has since lost his place to highly-rated youngster Kurt Zouma.

While Gray has a point when he says it would be a surprise if Chelsea opted to part ways with Cahill, it would arguably be more surprising if the club weren't looking at bringing in new defensive recruits next summer.

Terry, now 34 isn't getting any younger, and Ivanovic is 31 this month, so Mourinho needs to start preparing for life after Terry in particular, who might only have one more year left at the top level.

Where Cahill is concerned, it would be a big shock to see him leave even if Chelsea signed new defender. What is for certain is that he would have a long list of suitors waiting to snap him up should the Blues do the unthinkable.

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