Antonio Conte has made it clear that he wants more additions this summer following the arrivals of Antonio Rudiger, Willy Caballero, Tiemoue Bakayoko and Alvaro Morata, and Chelsea are set to back the manager to continue their spending spree.
The Blues return to the Champions League after a one-season hiatus and the manager is aware that he will need strength in depth if the team has to be competitive on all fronts. Chelsea's four summer signings have thus far set them back by around £140m ($182m), but the owner, Roman Abramovic, is said to be ready to back Conte to bring in more signings.
According to the Daily Mail, the Italian coach is keen on making four more additions before the close of the transfer window and has identified Alex Sandro, Antonio Candreva, Fernando Llorente and Virgil van Dijk as potential targets. Chelsea could take their overall spending to around £250m, which will match Pep Guardiola's Manchester City, who have already spent £230m for six signings – a world record for a single transfer window.
Conte is eager to strengthen in the wing-back areas and was linked with moves for Real Madrid's Danilo and AS Monaco's Benjamin Mendy. But both the players have chosen to move to the Etihad Stadium, which has drawn Chelsea's attention back to Juventus' Alex Sandro.
The Italian champions are reluctant to let the Brazilian left-back leave, but could allow him to leave Turin if the Premier League champions meet their £60m valuation of the player. Marcos Alonso is the manager's current first choice, but Conte is keen to bring in another quality option.
Candreva's emergence as a target is due to his versatility to play all across midfield and also in the right-wing back role. Victor Moses is the manager's only option at the moment, and he is keen to bring in further reinforcements.
Llorente, meanwhile, is being touted as a possible backup for Chelsea's record signing Alvaro Morata, but Swansea City will be reluctant to let go of their top scorer from last season. Conte has Michy Batshuayi in his ranks, but is still looking for forward options. The Belgian's goal scoring exploits against Arsenal in pre-season on Saturday (22 June) could see him being given another chance.
Van Dijk, on the other hand, is not high on the list of priorities for the manager, but will make a move for the defender if Southampton decides to sell. The Dutch defender has been axed from the squad for their pre-season tour of France and asked to train alone after being continually linked with a move away.
The Saints are not ready to sell Van Dijk, but Chelsea and Liverpool are waiting in the wings if they do decide to cash in on the centre-back, who is rated at around £60m. Conte has enough options at the back despite allowing John Terry and Nathan Ake to leave this summer. Rudiger has arrived from Roma and Conte has recalled Andreas Christensen from his loan spell at Borussia Monchengladback, both of whom are accomplished in central defence.