Barcelona keep tabs on Chelsea’s £78m duo as club veteran stalls on contract decision


Welcome to our football.london CareFree Chelsea daily news round-up. Maybe not the first, we’ve definitely done transfer round-ups before, and European round-ups, so I guess in some ways it’s not that new at all.

Anyway, we thought we would enter the world of football in a broad and roundabout manner for you and have some fun with some of the stories and captions doing the daily rounds.

As Barcelona hunt for players to make life easier for their new boss, two Chelsea attackers who have recently struggled, have made it on the Spanish giants’ wishlist.

Chelsea captain and club legend Cesar Azpilicueta is reportedly stalling over a contract as there may be an opportunity to return to his native country of Spain.

And finally, Thomas Tuchel has firmly denied the accusations that Saul Niguez was a ‘club signing’ rather than a personal choice of the manager.

Barca blues

As Barcelona continue to work around their financial difficulties. They find themselves in limbo, considering their finance books aren’t looking too easy on the eye, but are in desperate need of a squad revamp.

Spanish outlet Sport ES have reported Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez has made an inquiry to the Blues and both parties discussed the possibility of selling both Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner.



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The Spanish club are desperate to bolster their options with January a matter of weeks away. Combine this with the fact both Ziyech and Werner have had underwhelming starts to their Chelsea careers. Both are clearly highly talented individuals but have struggled to make a consistent impact, which could open the potential exit door.

Our take: Chelsea has a lot of attacking options with Mason Mount, Kai Havertz, Christian Pulisic, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Romelu Lukaku as well as Werner and Ziyech. This means they could do with thinning the squad as it’s going to be a very hard task for Thomas Tuchel to keep them all happy all season.

Captain stalls

Azpilicueta has had an amazing career at Stamford Bridge and it’s safe to say he has become one of Chelsea’s most consistent and reliable leaders in the club’s history. A fine player who has certainly given it a good shot at filling the boots of former captain John Terry.

However, with just six months left on his current contract, reports claim he is biding his time to assess other options.

The Express have reported Azpilicueta has been subject to interest from, yes you guessed it, Barcelona. You’d think over the years the tough memories Barca have given to Chelsea that they’d ease up, but clearly, they continue to twist the knife!



COBHAM, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 26: César Azpilicueta of Chelsea during a training session at Chelsea Training Ground on November 26, 2021 in Cobham, England. (Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)
César Azpilicueta currently leading from example day in day out. To lose him from the squad could be huge.

Our take: Azpilicueta has had a sensational tenure at Chelsea with over 400 appearances and a wide array of trophies in his ten-year spell at Stamford Bridge. He has been an incredible servant which has seen him become a real fans’ favourite, which would probably be the thing that makes his exit a little smoother if he were to move back to Spain.

Although Azpilicueta potentially leaving could be something many Chelsea fans are understanding of, the centre-back situation at Chelsea will almost certainly need to be addressed in the summer. The likes of Antonio Rudiger, Andreas Christensen, and Thiago Silva are also all out of a contract in June.

Welcome to the relentlessness of the Premier League, Mr Tuchel.

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Tuchel tears Saul claim

Many Chelsea fans were over the moon when the club signed Saul Niguez in the summer, as his career in Spain has been phenomenal over the years. However, the move to Stamford Bridge has not blossomed in the way anyone would’ve hoped for, as he has only featured in two of Chelsea’s opening 13 Premier League matches.

According to recent reports, the signing of Saul was a ‘club signing’ and was a favour to the player’s representatives, opposed to manager Thomas Tuchel actually wanting him. Tuchel’s had his say which leaves little room for debate.

“A club signing? No, we don’t do this. Until now we didn’t do club signings and coach’s signings. We do signings because we decide together because we believe it’s a good pick and a good addition to the squad, and this was exactly the case.”

The German continued: ‘We need to understand him a bit better, not in terms of language, but in terms of what is his real strength, the detail of the player, what can he add to the squad, where is his maybe unique quality and it was not easy. I guess it’s the first time he plays for another club than Atletico, he comes from the academy there, and we have to accept the style of the game is so different from Spain to here.”

Although Saul’s start has been underwhelming, to say the least, there is still plenty of football left of his loan deal at Chelsea and will almost certainly be given a chance to shine.

Our take: Although Saul’s start has been underwhelming, to say the least, there is still plenty of football left of his loan deal at Chelsea and will almost certainly be given a chance to shine and that chance could come tonight against Watford with Mateo Kovacic, N’Golo Kante out injured and Tuchel saying Jorginho is a doubt.

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