Chelsea’s dazzling new XI if Julian Nagelsmann has huge warchest

Graham Potter’s final press conference before Chelsea sacking

Chelsea have been linked with the appointment of Julian Nagelsmann after sacking Graham Potter. Nagelsmann was axed by Bayern Munich last month and could be the ideal replacement for Potter, especially as the highly-rated German tactician uses a similar 3-4-3 formation as the last two Blues head coaches. 

Nagelsmann would likely be backed with a big-spending summer transfer window. Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali will show no sign of holding back with their spending as they go on the hunt for the first trophy of their ownership. 

Here is how Chelsea could line up in a 3-4-3 under Nagelsmann. 

Goalkeeper: Jordan Pickford

England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford only recently signed a new contract with Everton. Although you get the sense that the Toffees only tied the 29-year-old down to improved terms to protect his value. 

Chelsea are likely to need a new shot-stopper in the summer. Successive managers have been unconvinced by both Kepa Arrizabalaga and Edouard Mendy. 

Pickford would also be beneficial for squad registration purposes as a homegrown player. With Mason Mount and Raheem Sterling possibly heading for the exit, the Blues might need to sign a couple of British stars in the summer. 

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Back three: Wesley Fofana, Benoit Badiashile, Josko Gvardiol

It would sum up the huge upheaval at Chelsea over the last 18 months that this back three would not have been at the club at the start of this season. Wesley Fofana was signed a month into the campaign, while Benoit Badiashile was prised away from Monaco during the infamously huge-spending January window. 

Chelsea have been strongly linked with Josko Gvardiol. However, the RB Leipzig starlet has a reported release clause of £110million and is being chased by all of Europe’s biggest clubs. With no Champions League football next season, Chelsea’s chances of signing the Croatian seem slim but Nagelsmann could tempt him.

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Wing-backs and midfield: Reece James, Enzo Fernandez, Declan Rice, Ben Chilwell

Chelsea smashed their record for the most expensive signing in the club’s history by throwing £120m at Benfica for Enzo Fernandez on deadline day in January. And they could need to do it all again if they are to sign Declan Rice ahead of the 2023-24 season. 

Rice – a former Chelsea academy prospect – will have far more enticing options in the summer. A potentially triumphant Arsenal are believed to be the favourites for the 24-year-old’s signature, while Manchester United and Manchester City have been linked. 

Chelsea may also seek a new left-wing-back, with Ben Chilwell’s fitness proving a problem for Potter. Marc Cucurella has struggled since his switch from Brighton. 

Attack: Joao Felix, Romelu Lukaku, Christopher Nkunku

Chelsea have struggled without a recognised striker and could save some money by reviving a player they paid £98m for in 2021. Romelu Lukaku was sent on loan to Inter Milan after struggling under Thomas Tuchel but Nagelsmann – or another successor to Potter – might believe the Belgian is of use. 

Nagelsmann prefers the same high-tempo pressing style as Tuchel, which might prove a problem for Lukaku, though. But with the combative Joao Felix – who could sign a permanent deal – and likely summer arrival Christopher Nkunku, Lukaku could have the support he needs to thrive. 

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