Chelsea news: Midfield pair to miss pre-season tour as Declan Rice transfer warning sent

After last season was disrupted by takeover talk and government sanctions, those associated with Chesea will be expecting better from their team in 2022-23.

The Blues have invested heavily since their Champions League win in 2021, although last term they were a distant third in the fight for the Premier League title race. The onus will be on Thomas Tuchel and his players to do a better job at keeping pace with the blistering tempo set by Manchester City and Liverpool.

At the moment, the squad doesn’t appear ready to do so though. Defensive reinforcements have still not been acquired following the departures of Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen, while the signings of Raheem Sterling and Raphinha are still not over the line despite encouraging reports.

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Duo to miss pre-season tour

Chelsea pair N’Golo Kante and Ruben Loftus-Cheek will both miss the club’s pre-season trip to the United States due to their Covid-19 vaccination status.

The Blues headed to the States on Saturday, where they will take part in a training camp and play three friendly matches against Club America, Charlotte and Arsenal. However, Tuchel’s plans will be disrupted by the absence of a couple of key midfielders.

According to the UK government’s website, most fully vaccinated foreign citizens can enter the US. Authorities will accept any Covid vaccine approved for emergency use by the World Health Organisation or the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Chelsea fans will be boosted by the return of Ben Chilwell after his long-term layoff, while Christian Pulisic will be the star attraction as the United States international returns to his home country.

Read the story in full HERE.

Declan Rice warning

West Ham United manager David Moyes has reiterated the club’s determination to keep hold of Declan Rice.

The England international has been frequently linked with Manchester United and Chelsea. Rice was a Blues fan as a youngster and was on the club’s books before being released. At West Ham he has developed into one of the best midfielders in the Premier League.

Moyes has suggested previously that an offer of £150 million may need to be lodged before the Hammers consider a sale and he’s made it clear the club will not be entertaining any offers for their star performer this summer.

“No bids,” he said when asked if there has been any approaches. “We wouldn’t be taking any, anyway. We’ve said all along he’s not for sale.”

Read the story in full HERE.

Action Images via Reuters)

Raphinha left out of Leeds tour

A transfer for Raphinha appears to be edging closer, as Leeds made the decision to leave the Brazil international out of their upcoming pre-season tour.

Chelsea have long been linked with the winger and reports surfaced suggesting a fee had been agreed with Leeds for his signature. However, Barcelona are also in the frame, meaning a transfer tug of war is ongoing for the talented 25-year-old.

Leeds are playing in Australia during pre-season and will be keen to avoid any distractions after the club made the decision to sell star midfielder Kalvin Phillips. Leaving Raphinha at home would indicate a switch is close and the Blues will be hopeful on making him a key part of their revamped attack this summer.

Read the story in full HERE.

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