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CHELSEA: Will Conte, Kante, Batshuayi & David Luiz restore Stamford Bridge glory?

Chelsea identified their shortcomings and duly pursued the most suitable targets during the recently completed summer transfer window.

New manager Antonio Conte was linked with every player under the sun, particularly elite performers in Italy's Serie A, as the Blues went about strengthening a squad that nosedived under Jose Mourinho before Guus Hiddink steadied the ship.

A new striker, defensive midfielder, centre-back and left-back were all needed and in the end, Conte managed to fill the gaps by bringing in excellent quality and energetic excitement.

There was a massive surprise on deadline day in the form of an old favourite returning but will he be the final piece of the puzzle that sees West London again smeared in glory?


Chelsea - 2016/17

Key signings


David Luiz - from PSG for
£34m

A very intriguing piece of business from Chelsea.

Luis left 'The Bridge' for French giants PSG two years ago for an exorbitant fee of £50million.

He returns to West London for an initial cost of £34m with further fees due in course.

Some are perplexed, bamboozled if you will, as Conte is known for operating with sturdy, strong defenders rather than those capable of the downright stupid.

Sure, Luiz is a brilliant footballer, but first and foremost he is a central defender who has trouble actually defending.

The jury is out, enormously, but all the critics be eating humble pie come May next year if the likeable Brazilian happens to get his hands on his first Premier League title?


N'Golo Kante - from Leicester City for £30m

The busy Frenchman will be instrumental in helping keep the opposition midfield quiet while stymying their attack and providing forward motion for the Blues.

An inspired signing after his astronomical season with the Foxes, who conquered all before them to win a surprise league title.

You just feel Kante, 25, will only continue to get better and better as he thrives on tackles and interceptions - which is rare in a modern footballer - topping both charts easily last season.

Claudio Ranieri referred to him as a 'fantastic horse' and all of his teammates will jump on the saddle if he sets the tone with his pestering, persistence, energy and stamina.

A fabulous signing.


Michy Batshuayi - from Marseille for
£33m

A relatively untried striker arrives at Chelsea with a fairly decent strike rate in both Belgium and France.

Batshuayi had plundered close to 80 senior club goals in just under 200 appearances by the age of 22 before moving to England and has already scored three times for his new club.

The Belgium international will generally play a back-up role to Diego Costa but there is no doubting his ability and expect him to surprise with his eventual scoring output for the 2016/17 season.

I'm tipping the price paid for Batshuayi will look more than equitable in a few years' time.


Marcos Alonso - from Fiorentina for
£23m

Back in English football for a third time after ok spells at Bolton Wanderers and Sunderland, Alonso has been signed as a player who will change the Chelsea formation.

Well, from a personnel point of view anyhow.

Alonso's presence will allow Cesar Azpilicueta to move from the left side of defence to his natural right, which is likely to further strengthen the Blues' back four.

However, there is talk that Conte could switch to a three-man defence upon Luiz's arrival which could see Alonso push further forward.

Nevertheless, he is a quality addition who will only add character, poise and versatility to an already decently endowed group of players.


Other additions


Eduardo - from Dinamo Zagreb for free

The 33-year-old goalkeeper has been signed purely as cover for Thibaut Courtois and Asmir Begovic.

Eduardo has close to 350 games experience at first-team level which suggests he will be fully prepared if called upon.

A depth signing who will push the first two choice glovemen all the way.


Overall

The aforementioned 'ins' would certainly strengthen any squad in the Premier League and there are no real 'outs' to be concerned about, with those who have been offloaded leaving the club for the pure fact they simply don't fit in.

A remarkable amount of 38 players have been sent out on loan by Chelsea, mainly for development, but also quite possibly in case of emergency.

The apparent 'stockpiling' of players has been questioned by outside parties but the Blues are happy to see their assets flourish elsewhere before giving them the chance to shine in London's west.

Supporters will be hoping for positive signs from such promising talents as Tammy Abraham (Bristol City), Bertrand Traore (Ajax), Kenedy (Watford), Charly Musonda (Real Betis), Kasey Palmer (Huddersfield Town), Lewis Baker (Vitesse Arnhem) and Nathan Ake (Bournemouth) while Juan Cuadrado, Christian Atsu, Loic Remy and Patrick Bamford may not spend much more time in a Blue shirt.

Well done Mr Conte for bringing in some pure quality but questions will quickly be asked if the five-time English champions aren't right amongst it come the turn of the year.


Tribal's Transfer Ranking:
8/10

Andrew Slevison
About the author

Andrew Slevison

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