With just over a week until the transfer window slams shut, Chelsea expect to be one of the busiest Premier League in the transfer market over the coming days.
Antonio Conte is intent on strengthening various positions, with wing-backs, midfielders and strikers on his transfer agenda ahead of the window slamming shut.
Chelsea have added four first-team signings so far in the shape of Willy Caballero, Antonio Rudiger, Tiemoue Bakayoko and Alvaro Morata but are in desperate need of more reinforcements after allowing key players such as Nemanja Matic to depart.
The Blues seem set to go right down to the wire in their attempts to strengthen their squad.
Here we take a look at the best and worst case scenarios for the club over the next week.
Best case scenario
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain leaves Arsenal for Chelsea
Despite suggestions that the Gunners cannot fit Oxlade-Chamberlain into their starting XI, Arsene Wenger and the majority of the Arsenal fanbase would be devastated at seeing him go.
Homegrown, versatile and approaching his prime, Arsenal would be handing Chelsea a player who could significantly improve under Conte’s tutelage at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea can take advantage of Arsenal’s failure to tie him down to new terms and though Wenger has attempted to fend off any interest in his player, the Blues could destabilise their London rivals by taking one of their players off them.
Chamberlain could potentially solve the problems Conte has in central midfield and also at right-wing back and his ability to play in an attacking midfield role will also prove useful.
Signing Alex Sandro
Chelsea have already seen an offer rejected in this transfer window and have been determined to secure the Juventus wing-back’s signature all summer, particularly after encountering frustration in their efforts to sign Danilo before he chose Manchester City.
Sandro is considered the perfect fit for Chelsea’s system and the prospect of him linking up with Eden Hazard was a tantalising one for supporters.
But Juve have held firm and refused to give in on his future, with Massimiliano Allegri insisting he stays put this season and it would surely take a significant offer for their stance to alter.
Getting a new central midfielder
Signing Virgil van Dijk would be ideal, as would finding proven Premier League cover for Alvaro Morata and Michy Batshuayi but finding a fourth central midfielder might be even more of a blessing.
David Luiz was forced into central midfield as a result of Cesc Fabregas’ suspension against Tottenham and his performance suggested he can offer Conte an option there when required.
But with only N’Golo Kante, Fabregas and Bakayoko, who showed promise against Spurs but also signs he will need time to adjust, to call upon in midfield, another signing is needed.
Danny Drinkwater has emerged as the principal target and though Chelsea fans hold understandable reservations, they require bodies in that area.
Some clarity on Diego Costa
Will he stay, knuckle down and get on with the job or will he continue to sulk about Chelsea refusing to countenance a deal that would see him move to Atletico?
Either way, Chelsea need to know whether or not they can call upon the Spaniard until at least January or not.
Conte needs a settled squad after a tumultuous start to the season and the disruptive influence of the Spaniard will not help establish harmony in the group.
Worst case scenario
The worst case scenario for Chelsea is that they continue to dally in the transfer window and do not secure the players they need to bolster their squad this summer.
They require upgrades in the wing-back positions and in central defence and squad players in midfield and up front, but it’s very unlikely they will sign five players in nine days, four would be considered an accomplishment and three is realistic.
If they fail to get at least a trio of new additions on board, then worries over retaining their Premier League title will become more realistic.
Drinkwater’s arrival would be deemed by some as a worst-case scenario but he would at least provide sufficient cover in midfield, something Chelsea do not currently boast.
Of all the positions Chelsea are looking at for new signings, right wing-back and central midfield appear to be the most pressing areas, while Marcos Alonso’s Wembley heroics should not mask the need for a new signing on that side either.