Chelsea defender Cezar Azpilicueta has implored the club's hierarchy to bring in more new players before the transfer window closes.

The defending Premier League champions stumbled to a 3-2 home defeat against Burnley on 12 August – the first time the Blues have suffered a defeat on the opening day of the season since 1998.

Blues boss Antonio Conte has consistently expressed displeasure over the size of his squad, even though the likes of Alvaro Morata, Antonio Rudiger and Tiemoue Bakayoko have been brought in to Stamford Bridge over the summer.

The club have sold, released or sent out on loan a total of 32 players over the same time period, leaving Conte concerned over the depth of his squad.

"You can see the players we have lost and the players we have brought in and that it is not the same. We have good young players but we have to know the reality," Azpilicueta was quoted as saying by the London Evening Standard when asked if he agrees with Conte's assessment that Chelsea need a bigger squad.

"We know that being champions is even harder the next season – we have experience of that. Obviously we need players, also for the development of the young players.

"They need the help from top senior players, not to rush them into a position where maybe they are not ready to go at the moment, but they could be in the future.

Antonio Conte
Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has called for more players to be brought in before the transfer window shuts Getty Images

"I think it's something that the club is working on with the manager and hopefully we can get new signings in the next few weeks."

Conte's squad for the trip to Tottenham next weekend will be further reduced by the absence of Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas after the duo were sent off in the defeat against Burnley.

Chelsea have been linked with moves for Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk, Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Leicester midfielder Danny Drinkwater and Valencia right-back Joao Cancelo.