Chelsea: The first six fixtures of the 2021/22 Premier League
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Borussia Dortmund are planning for the new season with the assumption that Chelsea transfer target Erling Haaland will be part of their squad, the Bundesliga club’s sporting director has said.
Blues boss Thomas Tuchel wants to add star quality to his attacking ranks after seeing his side frequently misfire after his arrival in January.
Midfielder Jorginho was Chelsea’s top Premier League scorer with seven goals, although each of his strikes were penalties.
Their £47million signing Timo Werner netted just six times in the top-flight and Tuchel cannot afford a similarly low-scoring season from the forward if he is to challenge for the Premier League title.
Tuchel replaced Frank Lampard in January and sensationally guided Chelsea to Champions League success, beating Manchester City 1-0 in the final.
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The West Londoners just about scraped a top-four finish, although their European success meant that they automatically qualified for next season’s Champions League.
An assault on the Premier League title will be the minimum expectation for Chelsea next season and Tuchel is desperate to improve his squad.
The 20-year-old Dortmund forward Haaland is high on the German’s transfer agenda but could cost close to £150m.
And Chelsea’s plans to sign the Norwegian have already taken a hit as the Bundesliga side have started their 2021-22 plans with Haaland included.
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“Nothing has changed. We are still planning with Erling for the new season,” Dortmund’s sporting director Michael Zorc told German newspaper Bild.
Haaland has already scored a staggering 57 goals in 59 matches since signing for the club from RB Salzburg in January 2020.
He would add goals to a team which struggled to find the net, despite their excellent form under Tuchel.
The 47-year-old head coach does not want to make sweeping changes to his squad during the transfer window but has said that a couple of additions would be ideal.
Chelsea have been linked with a return for their former academy player Declan Rice, who was released by the Blues aged 14 and has since starred for West Ham.
The 22-year-old midfielder helped the Hammers qualify for the Europa League last season and has had an excellent Euro 2020 with England.
“Two or three could be very, very good,” Chelsea boss Tuchel said after the Champions League final victory over Man City.
“It’s a constant thing to never deny change.
“That you always bring new energy, new guys who question the old beliefs, who challenge everybody in the training and in matches, so I think it’s a good thing.
“We don’t need another seven and another complete turnover because it’s also our job to keep on improving.
“Because we have still a young squad and it’s not about stealing from them the chance to prove it again that they are capable of growing and evolving.
“But we have some ideas, of course, to make the group stronger and I think this can always be a positive thing to challenge all of us.”
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