Chelsea Manager Antonio Conte stated in his official press conference on Friday afternoon that he is concerned about the current size of his squad, and insisted that they need reinforcements.
Twitter: Conte says we ‘need more players to improve our squad’ both in terms of quality and the size of it. #CFC (@ChelseaFC)
On Saturday morning Sky Sports transfer guru Jim White confirmed that according to his source, Conte is an admirer of Leicester midfielder Danny Drinkwater and wants to sign Southampton’s wantaway defender Virgil van Dijk.
Twitter: Top source reveals @ChelseaFC boss Antonio Conte wants Virgil van Dijk and is big admirer of Danny Drinkwater. (@JimWhite)
Meanwhile, The Mirror have reported that Chelsea actually attempted to sign Drinkwater last season and the Italian has always admired him. The England International is also keen on the move allegedly.
Twitter: Leicester fans look away now… Danny Drinkwater wants to join Kante at Chelsea
https://t.co/72YnfSAZv9 https://t.co/zvfqcg5351 (@MirrorFootball)
Drinkwater is seen as an excellent reinforcement in the centre of the park for The Blues, in a position that is looking dangerously thin for a Club about to defend their Premier League Title.
Capped by England recently, the 27-year old would bring some much needed experience to the Chelsea side, with departures of key players such as John Terry and Nemanja Matic this summer.
Conte has always preferred robust hard working type players within his squad, players he can always rely on to put in a shift and Drinkwater certainly fits that category, hence the Chelsea managers’ admiration.
Van Dijk in the meantime is reportedly on the recieving end of some interest from the English Champions, after Liverpool declared they had ended theirs.
The Express report that Southampton now prefer to sell to Chelsea, with a bid expected to arrive.
Twitter: Virgil van Dijk: Chelsea move preferred over Liverpool, bid incoming https://t.co/iQNJpsb0Yj #CFC #SFC #LFC https://t.co/AvvOv8hlOa (@DExpress_Sport)
The reported fee is said to be around £50m and Conte has been linked with the player for sometime. Chelsea seem to be well equipped in that department though with the likes of David Luiz, Gary Cahill, Cesar Azpilicueta, Andreas Christensen and new signing Antonio Rudiger.
For Van Dijk to fit in, you would imagine that Christensen could depart, and Azpilicueta may well be considered for a wing back role. It could well be however, that Conte just feels that the quality of Van Dijk is just to good to be ignored seeing as the player is dead set on leaving St Mary’s.