Lukaku details chats with Drogba prior to Chelsea return
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Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel continues to have his huge first-team squad reduced, as sporting director Marina Granovskaia plots two more departures. The Blues have made over £90million in sales this summer.
Tuchel’s squad last week stood at a huge 42 players but has since been trimmed.
Michy Batshuayi headed to Besiktas on loan earlier this week to become the 13th player to leave Stamford Bridge this summer.
Chelsea were able to use most of their transfer income to complete the £97.5m return of Romelu Lukaku from Inter Milan.
The £34m exit of striker Tammy Abraham to Roma makes up a large portion of money received the West Londoners’ in transfer fees.
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Fikayo Tomori’s £25m move to AC Milan and Marc Guehi’s £18m switch across London to Crystal Palace have also helped.
Now Chelsea are set for two more departures to help Tuchel trim down his rota. Journalist Fabrizio Romano has claimed that Emmerson Palmieri is set to join Lyon on loan, while the Blues are also waiting for news on Ike Ugbo’s departure.
Ugbo was set to join Belgian side Genk on a permanent deal but Marseille came in with an 11th-hour bid.
The striker will now decide who he wants to join following a successful loan spell with Cercle Brugge last term.
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It was reported last week that further incomings at Chelsea will depend on players leaving.
Goal claimed that Tuchel is concerned that squad harmony will become an issue if his squad is too large.
The German promised not to make sweeping changes to his side at the end of last season, but will likely feel that a couple of new additions to his regular core of starters will boost his Premier League title ambitions.
Lukaku is Tuchel’s only major arrival this summer, although the former Fulham goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli has arrived on a free transfer to provide competition to Edouard Mendy and Kepa Arrizabalaga.
The 47-year-old Tuchel replaced Frank Lampard in January following a disappointing start to the campaign.
They were ninth when he took over but he guided them to a fourth-placed finish.
Tuchel then capped a wonderful first five months in charge by beating Manchester City in an all-English Champions League final, with Kai Havertz scoring the only goal.
Lukaku was not available for Chelsea’s first match of the season but is expected to go into the matchday squad for Sunday’s visit to Arsenal.
The Belgian’s transfer comes 10 years after he first joined the club. He managed 15 appearances during his maiden spell but failed to score before leaving for Everton in a permanent £28m move.
Tuchel’s side started the new campaign with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Crystal Palace.
Goals by Marcos Alonso, Christian Pulisic and Trevoh Chalobah helped the Blues to an impressive win.
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