Chelsea are poised to complete the £90million signing of Kai Havertz, which will take their summer spending total to an eye-watering £230million.
After securing a fourth-place finish in his debut season as Blues boss, Frank Lampard is splashing some serious cash at Stamford Bridge this summer in a bid to move closer towards Premier League title favourites Liverpool and Manchester City.
Hakim Ziyech was brought in from Ajax for £36million, while Timo Werner sealed a £54million switch from RB Leipzig earlier this summer.
The west London club also forked out £50million to sign Ben Chilwell from Leicester last week.
Yet Chelsea are not finished there, as reports indicate Bayer Leverkusen star Havertz is set to become their club-record signing at some point next week.
If they do get a £90million deal for the German youngster over the line as expected, the Blues will have racked up a £230million summer transfer bill.
And amid concerns over Kepa Arrizabalaga’s form, it is believed Lampard also wants to bring in a new goalkeeper before the window slams shut – with Atletico Madrid’s Jan Oblak on his radar.
But in the current climate, which has seen the coronavirus pandemic damage club finances across the globe, how can Chelsea afford to bolster their squad in such expensive fashion?
After recording a net spend of around £120million in the 2018/19 campaign, and posting a pre-tax loss of £101.8million in their accounts for the financial year, Chelsea were of course struck with a two-window transfer ban ahead of the 2019/20 season.
The embargo allowed them to recover a large chunk of those losses in the next financial year, with Eden Hazard’s £100million move to Real Madrid contributing heavily to player sales worth £140million.
Mateo Kovacic, who sealed a permanent £40million switch to Chelsea last summer after his one-year loan stint at the club, was their only purchase in 2019/20.
Despite securing his transfer back in February, Ziyech’s £36million switch to the Bridge was officially registered no earlier than July 1 of this year, as was the same with Werner and Chilwell’s respective transfers worth a combined £104million.
So far that gives Chelsea a total summer bill of £140million in 2020/21, yet Alvaro Morata completing a permanent £50million move to Atletico Madrid this summer has reduced that net spend to £90million.
Mario Pasalic, who spent the 2019/20 campaign on loan with Atalanta, has also joined the Serie A outfit in a permanent switch worth £14million – taking their overall outlay down to £76million.
That means Havertz’ club-record arrival will actually set the Blues back £166million this summer – a price Roman Abramovich is prepared to pay in his pursuit of Premier League glory.
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Chelsea could also cash in on a number of outcasted first-team stars to balance the books even further; with Jorginho, Emerson Palmieri and Michy Batshuayi all expected to depart.
With just two weeks to go until they kick off the new Premier League season away at Brighton, though, Lampard will want to get his business done as soon as possible.