Roman Abramovich is prepared to splash out on a big-money signing this summer, according to Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck.
With a new manager to be installed, Buck does not expect wholesale changes in the playing staff, but he revealed owner Abramovich his prepared to open his chequebook should the right man become available.
"We expect three or four players to leave and three or four players to come in," the chairman told Chelsea TV. "We would like to fund those purchases with the transfer fees we receive but, having said that, if the right player comes along, even if he's an expensive player, Roman is willing to do that if it makes sense for Chelsea Football Club."
He added: "We'll all just have to see how the summer progresses and see what the club looks like when training starts in early July."
Buck revealed his admiration for the transfer policy of rivals and champions Manchester United.
He said: "They have really perfected the ability of freshening the team every year and I think we should assume that the same thing will happen at Manchester United this summer."
AC Milan boss Carlo Ancelotti remains favourite to replace Guus Hiddink, who has endeared himself to the Chelsea fans since being place in interim charge in February following the departure of Luiz Felipe Scolari. Buck expects Chelsea to have a new man in place "sooner rather than later".
He said: "When Guus came here in February the board knew it was only a temporary assignment. No one believed us but we knew then and we know now that it was only a temporary assignment. So at that moment we started the process of thinking about who our next manager would be.
"We've done our homework and we would hope that quite probably, sooner rather than later, we will announce the manager for next season and beyond.
"We're looking for the kind of person that can win trophies for Chelsea Football Club in an entertaining way year after year after year."
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