The three players set to leave Chelsea this summer - and ten who could join them

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The Blues face some major calls as the future of several players lies in the balance ahead of the summer transfer window.

Mauricio Pochettino will look to put his own stamp on the Chelsea squad he inherited from Frank Lampard over what is sure to be an intriguing summer at Stamford Bridge.

The former Tottenham Hotspur manager has his work cut out as he looks to move on several existing members of the Blues squad to make way for new faces - including the likes of exciting attacking signing Christopher Nkunku - and there are several candidates to head through the exit door. Three players have already departed after they were named on Chelsea’s released list - but there are another ten players that could also bring down the curtain on their time at Stamford Bridge over the coming weeks.

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Leaving: Tiemoue Bakayoko

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An FA Cup winner with the Blues in 2018, Bakayoko’s spell at Stamford Bridge has been otherwise disappointing. Much of his time as a Chelsea player has been spent out on loan at other clubs, and the midfielder has experienced contrasting fortunes during temporary stints at Monaco, AC Milan and Napoli over the last four seasons. However, the once-capped France international will be looking for a new club over the coming months after he was named in a list of players released by the Blues.

Leaving: Nathan Baxter

Now 24-years-old, Baxter will leave Stamford Bridge when his contract comes to an end next week after failing to make a first-team appearance for the Blues. Baxter has been on a wide range of loan spells that included non-league clubs Met Police and Woking, Scottish side Ross County and Championship club Hull City.

Leaving: Dujon Sterling

Another academy product that will leave the club next week, Sterling made two senior appearances for the Blues as a late substitute in an FA Cup third round tie against Norwich City in January 2018 and in a Carabao Cup win against Nottingham Forest four months earlier. After spending time on loan at Coventry City, Wigan Athletic, Blackpool and Stoke City, the full-back will join Rangers on a free transfer on 1st July.

Possible: Kai Havertz

Chelsea’s Kai Havertz warms up ahead of a matchChelsea’s Kai Havertz warms up ahead of a match
Chelsea’s Kai Havertz warms up ahead of a match | AFP via Getty Images

The Germany international scored nine goals and provided one assists in 47 appearances in all competitions last season as the Blues struggled to make an impact in any competition. The striker has failed to live up to the hype that surrounded his move to Stamford Bridge in September 2020 and there are now strong reports suggesting Chelsea and involved in discussions with London rivals Arsenal as the Gunners look to make Havertz part of their squad over the coming weeks.

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Possible: Kalidou Koulibaly

Once viewed as one of the best defender in European football after he impressed with Napoli, Koulibaly struggled to make a major impact after joining Chelsea from the Serie A club last summer. Much like former Blues team-mate Hakim Ziyech, Koulibaly is said to be attracting interest from clubs in the Saudi Pro League, with a move to Al Hilal said to have been agreed.

Possible: Eduoard Mendy

It seems a long time since Mendy played an integral role in helping Chelsea win the Champions League, World Club Cup and UEFA Super Cup during his first two seasons at Stamford Bridge. However, his form has been, at best, inconsistent over the last year and there are strong suggestions that he will move to Saudi club Al Ahli this summer.

Possible: Conor Gallagher

Gallagher is one of the many Blues’ players linked with a move away from the club this summer, as new manager Mauricio Pochettino looks to trim down his 38-man playing squadGallagher is one of the many Blues’ players linked with a move away from the club this summer, as new manager Mauricio Pochettino looks to trim down his 38-man playing squad
Gallagher is one of the many Blues’ players linked with a move away from the club this summer, as new manager Mauricio Pochettino looks to trim down his 38-man playing squad

Despite his obvious promise and some impressive displays during loan spells at Crystal Palace, West Bromwich Albion and Swansea City, Gallagher is believed to be one player that could be moved on this summer to allow Mauricio Pochettino to put his own stamp on the Blues squad. The likes of Brighton and Hove Albion, Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur are all said to be among his admirers.

Possible: Christian Pulisic

Bar a strong end of season run of form back in the 2019/20 season, the United States captain has never really claimed a regular place in the Blues side under successive managers. Understandably, he’s been repeatedly linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge over the last year. Although Pulisic seems to be a good fit for Pochettino’s style of football, several clubs are reportedly keen to test Chelsea’s resolve with a loan or permanent bid this summer.

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Possible: Ruben Loftus-Cheek

The versatile midfielder has been part of the first-team setup at Stamford Bridge for almost eight years now - although he did spend time out on loan with Crystal Palace and Fulham. At 27, Loftus-Cheek will need to secure regular first-team action as he looks to re-establish himself in Gareth Southgate’s England squad and it seems unlikely he will get that at Chelsea. AC Milan are reportedly monitoring his situation and there were suggestions preliminary talks had taken place in recent weeks. The upward trajectory of his career took a downward turn back in 2019, when he ruptured his left Achilles tendon in a post-season friendly that was bizarrely scheduled before the Blues’ Europa League final against Arsenal.

Possible: Romelu Lukaku

Romelu Lukaku of Inter Mila during the UEFA Champions League 2022/23 final match between FC (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)Romelu Lukaku of Inter Mila during the UEFA Champions League 2022/23 final match between FC (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
Romelu Lukaku of Inter Mila during the UEFA Champions League 2022/23 final match between FC (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images) | Getty Images

Returning to Stamford Bridge after a loan spell with former club Internazionale, Lukaku should be relishing the opportunity to work under Pochettino and being handed a fresh start by the new Blues boss. However, there is a suggestion Lukaku could be sold this summer to bring in significant funds and free up another space in the squad to allow Pochettino to bring in his own players. A move to Saudi Arabia currently looks unlikely, and the Blues aren’t keen on him spending another season on loan with Inter - if he goes, it will most likely be on a permanent basis.

Possible: Marc Cucurella

Just a year has passed since Cucurella joined the Blues from Brighton and Hove Albion after enjoying a remarkable first season on the south coast. However, that form failed to translate into his time at Stamford Bridge and there have been reports Cucurella could be allowed to leave the club this summer, with Newcastle United said to be considering a move.

Possible: Mason Mount

Mason Mount of Chelsea applauds the fans after their side’s defeat in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal second leg match (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)Mason Mount of Chelsea applauds the fans after their side’s defeat in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal second leg match (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Mason Mount of Chelsea applauds the fans after their side’s defeat in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal second leg match (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images) | Getty Images

Unless you’ve been living under a rock in recent weeks, you’ll be fully aware of Manchester United’s interest in the England star and the fact that the Red Devils have made at least two unsuccessful bids over the last ten days. However, their interest in Mount remains strong and it seems an agreement is drawing closer. It would be a surprise to see Mount in blue when the new Premier League season gets underway in August.

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Possible: Pierre-Emerick Aubamayang

At 34-years-old and heading into the final 12 months of his current deal, the Gabon international looks a certainty to depart this summer. There are strong rumours Barcelona are keen to take him back to the Camp Nou just under a year since he left the Catalan giants to join Chelsea. Yet another case of the Blues buying a once lethal striker when they’re way past their best.

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