Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is interested in Sami Khedira, yet is currently unable to make a bid for the Real Madrid midfielder.
According to the latest speculation from The Daily Star, Mourinho - who has been very active indeed in the transfer market so far this summer with moves for Diego Costa, Cesc Fabregas, Filipe Luis and Didier Drogba - has World Cup winner Khedira on his list of potential replacements for John Obi Mikel, yet is unable to move forward in this regard until the Nigerian's future at Stamford Bridge is fully resolved.
Mikel - whose initial move to Chelsea in 2007 involved a rather acrimonious dispute with Premier League rivals Manchester United - has featured on a regular basis for the Blues over recent seasons, winning the Premier League title, four FA Cups, the Europa League and the Champions League during his seven-year stint in West London.
While he has generally been a steady and reliable performer for a succession of different managers, however, the former Lyn Oslo starlet is clearly not regarded as an indispensable member of Chelsea's first-team squad under Jose Mourinho.
January's return of Serbian international Nemanja Matic hugely increased competition in Mourinho's midfield and the recent purchase of Spanish international Fabregas is likely to further reduce Mikel's chances of starting on a regular basis moving forward.
Chelsea's desire to sell Mikel has been quite apparent for several weeks now. Only last month, reports suggested that several Serie A clubs had been offered the chance to sign him for a fee of just £5 million.
Watch: The latest Chelsea transfer news
If Mikel were to depart, that would presumably free up the necessary space for Mourinho to pursue Khedira, a player who has also been the subject of intense transfer speculation this summer.
Arsenal have been repeatedly credited with a strong interest in the 27-year-old, who looks increasingly likely to be sold by reigning European champions Real Madrid in the coming weeks with his contract due to expire in 2015.
£24 million-rated Khedira - who was signed by Mourinho during his spell in La Liga - would certainly represent an enormous upgrade on the unspectacular Mikel, although his recent injury record may be some cause for concern.
Chelsea fans, would you like to see Mikel leave the club and be replaced by Khedira? Would the German represent a good signing for Mourinho? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box provided below.
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