Abramovich set to spend as Chelsea target star signing

Click to follow
The Independent Football

Roman Abramovich is expected to meet with manager Carlo Ancelotti today to discuss the club's transfer targets this summer with the aim of freshening up their ageing squad.

The Chelsea owner has already told Ancelotti he is ready to spend money on one or two key players, but he will be cautious about prices being raised as he has been disappointed in the transfer market too many times. The club, who are on the verge of claiming a Premier League and FA Cup Double, are keen to recruite one of Europe's biggest names, but they had the same plan last year and decided not to spend when they were quoted huge sums of money for players such as Franck Ribéry of Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid's Argentinian striker Sergio Aguero.

The Premier League's new rules on "home-grown" players means Chelsea have to move at least four foreign players out of the squad before they can bring anyone in. Deco and Juliano Belletti are due to make way, while Michael Ballack is out of contract and is wanted by Schalke.

Chelsea have however agreed to offer a two-year contract extension to striker Nicolas Anelka that would keep the Frenchman at Stamford Bridge until 2013. The 31-year-old striker, who joined for £15m from Bolton in January 2008, has scored just one goal in his last 17 games for the club but has made himself an instrumental figure at the club he calls "home" after a career that has encompassed eight different teams.

Chelsea will win the Premier League on Sunday if they beat Wigan at Stamford Bridge, and can add the FA Cup six days later when the face Portsmouth in the final at Wembley. Goalkeeper Petr Cech does not expect Chelsea to stumble at this stage and pointed to the club's record of beating closest rivals Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool home and away this season as evidence that they have learned the ability to deliver in crucial games.

"We are confident and we know that we shouldn't lose two games in a row," Cech said. "We know that when something goes wrong, we always want to put it right the next game and so far it has worked well. We have won all of those big games home and away. Last season, before the change of the manager, we gave points to our rivals."