BY PAUL LAGAN
Ross Barkley is wanted by West Ham and they are also trying to take his Chelsea team-mate Tammy Abraham on loan.
The duo are surplus to requirements at SW6 and could command a total fee edging towards £70million – £50m of that going on Abraham.
But while the Hammers are willing to pay the Blues £20m for midfielder Barkley, they can’t afford the price tag that Chelsea will put on their South London-born striker.
Abraham, born in Camberwell, is keen on a move away from Stamford Bridge as he accepts they want to sell him to help fund the expected £150m bid for Norway striker Erling Haaland.
An increasing number of youngsters appear to be assessing their futures at Stamford Bridge, with livewire Lewis Bate completing a move to Leeds United yesterday.
The 18-year-old has seen what is happening at the club, where the likes of Abraham has been frozen out of first-team action, and is encouraged by the development of Tariq Lamptey, who exited Stamford Bridge in pursuit of first team action at Brighton.
Bate, who captained Chelsea in the 2020 FA Youth Cup final, has signed a three-year contract with Leeds and will initially link up with their U23 side.
Conor Gallagher, 21, who was on loan at WBA last season could follow suit with Crystal Palace keen to land him.
Chelsea would prefer one more loan period for the midfielder before deciding to keep him or sell him.
Youngster Armando Broja has signed a new deal that sees him remain a Blue until 2026.
Broja,20, was on loan at Dutch outfit Vitesse Arnhem last season, where he made 34 appearances.
Ex-Fulham goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli could be heading to Stamford Bridge as third-choice goalkeeper in place of Willy Caballero, who left SW6 last month.
The Blues missed out on Wayne Hennessey, 34, who saw better chances to play first-team football, by opting to go to Burnley after his Crystal Palace contract expired on July 1.
Chelsea have Edouard Mendy as first choice while Kepa is languishing on the bench.
Camberwell-born Bettinelli was on loan at Middlesbrough last season.
The Blues thrashed Peterborough United 6-1 in a behind-closed-doors friendly at Cobham at the weekend.
Chelsea went to County Kildare in Ireland for a week of training.
There will be an open training session at Stamford Bridge on Sunday, August 8.
The Blues squad will be put through their paces by Tuchel ahead of the new campaign starting, with space for 5,000 fans to watch on from the stands.
The Champions League trophy will be paraded, and there will also be Q&As with Tuchel and his players, as well as chances to win signed items.
Tickets will be free for season ticket holders on a first come, first served basis and will go on sale on Wednesday.
The event starts at 9.30am and finishes at 1.30pm, with entertainment provided before training gets underway.
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