How Chelsea could line up next season after Tuchel hints at three signings

Now that the season is over, Chelsea can celebrate their status as Champions League winners. But Thomas Tuchel will be wiping the slate clean because his work is starting all over again.

The German tactician masterminded their unexpected success having only been at the helm for five months, following the sacking of club legend Frank Lampard.

But, on their way to beating Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid, Tuchel’s sound tactical knowledge and sturdy defence enabled them to get the better of some of Europe’s best teams.

It proved to be the case in the final too when Kai Havertz scored the winning goal in Porto to beat Manchester City 1-0 and claim their second European title in nine years.

Tuchel hinted earlier this week that while he is content with his current crop of players, he is looking to add "two or three" new signings to his squad this summer.

"Two or three could be very, very good," he told reporters.

"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 [players] 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."

It is no secret that Chelsea desperately need to sign a striker this summer after Timo Werner and Havertz’s struggles in front of goal in their debut season in England, with Jorginho bizarrely finishing the season as their top league goalscorer with seven goals.

The Blues will no doubt be involved in the conversation should Borussia Dortmund decide to sell Erling Haaland this summer, with the 20-year-old striker reportedly commanding a £100million transfer fee.

What do you think Chelsea's lineup will look like for the 2021/22 season? Let us know in the comments section below.

But they could miss out on Haaland with Man City and Real Madrid also poised to enter the race for the Norwegian sensation, who netted 41 goals in all competitions this season.

Speculation persists that Romelu Lukaku, who played for Chelsea in his teenage years between 2011 and 2014, could return to Stamford Bridge this summer if attempts to sign Haaland end in failure.

The Belgian frontman has enjoyed a storming season in front of goal for Inter Milan with 27 goals as the Nerazzurri claimed their first Scudetto in 11 years.

But financial concerns at the Italian club and the departure of Antonio Conte suggest they could cash in on their star names to balance the books.

It is understood that billionaire owner Roman Abramovich has personally involved himself to convince Lukaku to head back to west London after Euro 2020 this summer, with contract talks underway.

In addition to bringing in a striker, Tuchel has identified two defensive signings to take his side to next level.

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That’s despite the fact the 48-year-old has overseen an incredible defensive record since taking over at the club, with Chelsea keeping 19 clean sheets in 29 games.

Bayern Munich defender Niklas Sule has been linked with a move to the Premier League since Tuchel took over and could cost £25m, while West Ham star Declan Rice remains a top target.

Rice, 22, has emerged as a key figure for the Hammers and also at international level with England and his £80m asking price could deter Chelsea in their pursuit, with Monaco’s Aurelien Tchouameni also a target.

If director Marina Granovskaia — responsible for handling the club’s transfer business — is successful in acquiring the pair, it could spell bad news for French defender Kurt Zouma.

  • Chelsea identify cheaper Declan Rice transfer alternative – but Thomas Tuchel undecided

The 26-year-old is already fifth-choice at centre-back behind Thiago Silva, Cesar Azpilicueta, Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen, and Sule’s arrival would surely signal the end of his six-year spell with the London club.

As part of the summer clear-out, Ross Barkley, Fikayo Tomori, Emerson, Olivier Giroud, Tammy Abraham and Kepa Arrizabalaga could all head for the exit to help fund their bids for Lukaku, Rice and Sule.

But how will they fit in? Using Tuchel’s favoured 3-4-3 formation, Star Sport predicts how Chelsea could line up next season…

Chelsea XI: Mendy; Sule, Thiago Silva, Rudiger; James, Rice, Kante, Chilwell; Mount, Lukaku, Werner.

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