With Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola arriving in the Premier League this summer, it’s easy to forget that Chelsea have also got a new manager.
That man is Antonio Conte, who will arrive at Stamford Bridge after leading his Italian side at the European Championships.
With Mourinho and Guardiola in the country, the headlines are being hogged by the imminent arrival of Zlatan Ibrahimovic at Old Trafford or Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in talks with a move to the Etihad Stadium.
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Down in west London, there have been very few reports linking Chelsea with big names. Conte having his hands full preparing for Euro 2016 may have something to do with it while another factor could be that the Blues finished tenth last season and will, therefore, be without any form of European football next term.
Despite having no continental football to look forward to, it’s unlikely to stop Roman Abramovich from getting his cheque book out.
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The club have spent almost £300 million over the previous three campaigns and, given their awful attempt to defend their Premier League title last season, the Russian billionaire will likely allow the new manager to spend some big money in the coming months.
And Conte wants to raid his former club, Juventus, to make his first signing as boss. That’s according to The Sun who claim the Italian is keen to sign Stephan Lichtsteiner for a reported £12 million fee.
The report states that Chelsea have already offered Lichtsteiner a three-year contract which guarantees first-team football.
The right-back is currently with the Swiss national side preparing for the Euros in France and has requested for a few days to think about the offer on the table.
The Old Lady are expected to confirm the signing of Barcelona’s Dani Alves in the coming weeks meaning the Swiss international’s future in Turin is in doubt.
It would certainly be a fairly underwhelming first purchase for the club with Lichsteiner being 32-years-old and reaching the end of his career.
However, with Branislav Ivanovic also at the same age and struggling for form for the majority of the last campaign, the capture of Lichtsteiner could be seen as a canny signing from Conte.
The experienced defender has been at Juventus for five seasons, lifting the Serie A title every year. Conte signed him just one month after being appointed as manager of Juventus with the pair working together for three seasons.
It’s that sort of winning mentality that Chelsea need next season as they attempt to challenge for the league title once again.
While Chelsea fans will be hoping for more exciting signings this summer, Lichtsteiner will bring plenty of experience and know-how to the Premier League and could act as a bridge between the manager and the players.
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