Chelsea transfer chief Marina Granovskaia has significant problem to solve this summer

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Chelsea transfer chief Marina Granovskaia faces a monumental challenge as the club faces losing up to 14 first-team players within the next 12 months. The Blues currently have more than a dozen stars’ contracts expiring next summer, including several big names.

The main focus in any transfer window is incomings, which Chelsea thrived with last summer.

Thomas Tuchel is yet to receive his first signing ahead of his first full campaign as manager however.

However, whilst Granovskaia will be working on bolstering Tuchel’s squad ahead of the 2021/22 campaign, one eye will undoubtedly be on retaining the club’s current playing staff.

As the risk of losing several players on free transfers looms closer, Chelsea must decide whether to sell or offer new contracts soon.

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Among the 14 players in the final 12 months of their current deals, five haven’t had much of a chance in the first team.

Lewis Baker, Matt Miazga, Baba Rahman, Jake Clarke-Salter and Charly Musonda Jr will all most likely leave this summer or next.

They are unlikely to be the players Chelsea will be worried about losing for nothing in 11 months.

Current fringe players like Danny Drinkwater, Tiemoue Bakayoko, Michy Batshuayi and Davide Zappacosta aren’t crucial in Tuchel’s plans.

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However, considering the fees which Chelsea paid for them, especially Drinkwater and Bakayoko, seeing them leave as free agents would be a financial blow.

The biggest concern will be regarding the other five names nearing the end of their current contracts.

Five of Tuchel’s regular defenders are nearing the end of their deals, which presents the risk of options becoming bare next term.

Thiago Silva, now 36, is likely to be in his second and final year at Chelsea, whilst club captain Cesar Azpilicueta, now 31, is also in his twilight years.

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Other regular centre-backs in Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger will be the most significant worries on the list, as well as left-wing-back Emerson Palmieri.

They have plenty more to give, and Chelsea would not only lose quality players but potential big fees this summer.

Chelsea have already sold a few first-team stars this summer, with Fikayo Tomori and Olivier Giroud joining AC Milan, for example.

Other sales could be on the way, though, if the Blues aren’t encouraged about keeping this set of players beyond their current deals.

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