Date: 7th December 2021 at 4:02pm
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After a scintillating start to the season, Chelsea are now enduring their first mini-blip of the Thomas Tuchel era, having won just one of their past four league games. 

The Blues’ defeat to West Ham at the London Stadium on Saturday, as well as draws against Burnley and Manchester United in recent weeks, allowed Liverpool to knock them off of top spot.

The defeat to the Hammers would have been particularly disappointing for Tuchel as he witnessed his side displaying some questionable defending, which was out of character for a team that have become renowned for their defensive rigidity.

Blues fans will be hoping that they can get back to winning ways on Wednesday when they travel to face Zenit St. Petersburg in the final Champions League group stage game, ahead of a potentially tricky Premier League fixture against Leeds United on Saturday.

With that in mind, and a potential contract crisis heading his way next summer, it appears that Tuchel has already tied up his first January signing.

According to Hungary boss Marco Rossi, Fenerbahce defender Attila Szalai is set to join Chelsea in the new year.

Quizzed by Calciomercato on which of his players could suit Serie A, Rossi claimed that “I think Szalai, who plays for Fenerbahce, but I think he is joining Chelsea.”

“Clearly, he’s been followed by important clubs in Spain, but apparently his move to Chelsea is a done deal.”

Chelsea’s proposed move for a defender will come as no surprise, with Cesar Azpilicueta, Thiago Silva, Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger all set to be out of contract next summer.

Azpilicueta’s deal expires at the end of the season.

The quartet of defenders, who have made a total of 67 appearances for Chelsea this term across all competitions, would all be free to agree a deal with foreign clubs in January, adding extra pressure for the Blues to tie them down to new deals.

Szalai, who joined the Turkish side in January from Cypriot club Apollon Limassol, has been in good form in the Super Lig this term and played in all three of Hungary’s Euro 2020 matches.

His impressive run of form has seen him linked with a number of European clubs, however it appears that Chelsea have won the race for the 23-year-old’s signature.

He has been a regular in Fenerbahce’s backline, playing in 14 of their 15 league games so far and also featuring in every Europa League clash so far.

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