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Rumour Reel: Chelsea seeking Sanchez swoop, Bernardeschi bound for the Bridge too?

Holly Thackeray | 8 December 2016

Coral’s rumour reel

This morning’s football gossip, as the winter window edges ever closer, heavily features Premier League leaders Chelsea. Despite being top of the table, Antonio Conte seems to be intently seeking new recruits. That Chelsea want Alexis Sanchez is today’s big rumour, while the Blues are also said to have a Federico Bernardeschi transfer in mind too.

That’s not all that’s on the cards this morning, however, so dig in to Thursday’s fix of Coral’s rumour reel to see who your club could hook in January…

Chelsea want Alexis Sanchez?

Should the tabloids be believed, Chelsea will be busy bees across the next two transfer windows.

If Arsenal do not find a solution for reported contract wrangles with superstar pair Mesut Ozil and Sanchez, the Blues are believed to be ready to raid their London rivals for the latter.

Do Chelsea want Alexis Sanchez at Stamford Bridge?

Do Chelsea want Alexis Sanchez at Stamford Bridge?

The idea is apparently to partner dangerman Diego Costa with the flexible Gunners goal threat, who will have just a year left to run on his present deal after the end of this season.

With 11 league goals in 14 games so far this season, should Chelsea capture Arsenal’s most coveted asset, it would surely surpass Manchester United’s snatching of Gunners striker Robin van Persie back in 2012.

Blues in Federico Bernardeschi transfer?

While, elsewhere, Conte is also said to be plotting to pounce for Fiorentina wingman Bernardeschi. The bright Italian attacking talent was handed his maiden Azzurri cap by the now Chelsea coach and could cost as much as £38m.

A Federico Bernardeschi transfer could also be in the Blues' plans.

A Federico Bernardeschi transfer could also be in the Blues’ plans.

Should Bernardeschi arrive at Stamford Bridge, his seven strikes in 14 Serie A outings this season mean he is more likely to be deployed up top or in one of the free attacking roles behind the striker, rather than as a wingback, in Conte’s system.

And, in the last of the Blues boys rumours, the west Londoners are also reportedly ready to wade in and rival Liverpool, Man Utd and Manchester City for Southampton centre back Virgil van Dijk, who could be on the move this January.

Nelson Semedo eyed by Man Utd?

Last but not least, the Red Devils also feature in more rearguard recruitment rumours, as Jose Mourinho seeks to shore up his backline.

Man Utd have supposedly sent scouts to keep an eye on Benfica full back Nelson Semedo, who is represented by Gestifute, the same agency as his potential Portuguese coach.

Nelson Semedo to Man Utd also features in Coral's rumour reel for December 8th.

Nelson Semedo to Man Utd also features in Coral’s rumour reel for December 8th.

The Portugal cap, 23, has emerged as a top prospect, who can cover both defensive flanks but is primarily a right back. Seen as perhaps a long-term replacement for Antonio Valencia, Semedo is supposed to have a £50m release clause, but could likely be caught for less in the summer.

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See our rumour reel archive for more football gossip.