It was a very strange summer for Chelsea - possibly the strangest since Roman Abramovich took over the club and transformed it in 2003.
A two-window transfer ban was handed down ahead of the summer as punishment for breaking regulations over signing under-18 players.
That meant that there were only two arrivals this summer - Christian Pulisic, officially signed last January, and Mateo Kovacic, whose loan-deal was made permanent right before the ban kicked in.
And considering there were two major exits, it made life very difficult.
Eden Hazard left Chelsea after seven years, signing for Real Madrid, but the Blues couldn't bring in a proper replacement.
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Maurizio Sarri left for Juventus, too, meaning Chelsea recruited Frank Lampard to take over as manager, seemingly willing to give him a go under little pressure.
No one is expecting waves from a team that can't sign anyone, after all.
But that may be about to change in January if the Mirror are to be believed.
They claim that Chelsea are confident that they'll overturn the ban and are even briefing agents to expect plenty of business that month.
And so Lampard may soon find himself in a much better position than he - or Chelsea - thought he would.
If Chelsea can keep up with the pace at the top until January, Lampard will be able to boost his squad for a real assault on the top four.
What almost looked like a throwaway season - or at least a transitional one - now holds a good deal of promise.
It will be interesting to see if Lampard stick with the likes of Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount if the ban is overturned.
The duo have stepped up from the Championship to feature prominently for Chelsea this season - something that doesn't usually happen.
And with a need to replace Hazard properly, someone in the attack will have to make way.News Now - Sport News