It's set to be a busy summer of incomings and outgoings at Stamford Bridge, but who is the club most likely to spend big on?
After two transfer windows of unprecedented expenditure, Chelsea are facing what will be a defining summer in the club's modern history. Incoming head coach Mauricio Pochettino will be charged first and foremost with trimming the blubber from a bloated squad packed full of underperforming talent, but there is some targeted spending to be done, too.
Pochettino is believed to want a new core of players; a goalkeeper, central midfielder and striker are top of his shopping list, while Premier League experience is a bonus. One deal is already tied up, but who else are Chelsea most likely to sign in the upcoming transfer window?
Christopher Nkunku (RB Leipzig)
A shoo-in. While we are still awaiting an announcement, by all accounts Chelsea are certain to bring in RB Leipzig forward Christopher Nkunku as soon as the window opens in mid-June. A deal has been in place for some time, with the Blues set to fork out £52 million ($64m) on the Frenchman.
It's a move that will raise some eyebrows given the Blues' already overflowing attacking ranks, but you need only take a quick glance at the 25-year-old's output to understand that he should be a significant upgrade on the current batch of ineffectual forward players - with an injury-hit 20-goal season following a ridiculous campaign where he made 55 goal contributions.
However, Chelsea have been stung in the past with big-money signings from Leipzig...
Romeo Lavia (Southampton)
A host of leading clubs are certain to be queuing up for Romeo Lavia after Southampton dropped out of the Premier League. There's no way in hell he's going down with them. It's been widely reported that Chelsea will pursue a new No.6, with incoming manager Pochettino seeking Premier League experience to form the new core of his side, and NXGN Nine inductee Lavia may well fit the bill.
His press-resistance, ball-carrying ability and progressive passing would unquestionably be an asset to Chelsea, in an area of the pitch where they are lacking a player with the quality to supplement January arrival Enzo Fernandez. He is now certain to be available for a cut price after the Saints suffered relegation; Lord knows Chelsea could do with saving themselves some cash this summer.
Joao Felix (Atletico Madrid)
The jury will be out on whether Chelsea should pursue another deal for Joao Felix after his short-term loan at Stamford Bridge. A permanent transfer should be out of the question, with Atletico Madrid still demanding €100m (£87m/$107m) for the mercurial attacker.
However, a second temporary deal would make sense if an agreement can be found for a relatively low fee. Although his form has oscillated, Felix has largely been one of Chelsea best performers in an extremely challenging period for the club, scoring four of the club's measly 15 goals since he signed in January. It would be fascinating to see the possibilities in an in-form side - at his flying best he has shown that he can be truly world-class.
What's more, he seems genuinely happy at Stamford Bridge, although Chelsea's failure to qualify for the Champions League could be a factor in his decision-making. "I don't know yet about my future," he said recently. "It's four or five months and I love it. It's a top club, everyone in the club was very good to me. My team-mates were unbelievable and I really like to be here."
Andre Onana (Inter)
Chelsea will pursue a new goalkeeper this summer, and Inter's Andre Onana currently seems like the most likely option. There will be very few objections to the decision among the fanbase, with neither Kepa Arrizabalaga nor Edouard Mendy proving themselves to be long-term No.1 options for an elite football club, although the former enjoyed an improved season between the sticks.
Manuel Ugarte (Sporting CP)
The latest name to emerge as a possible midfield target is Manuel Ugarte, and things seem to progressing quickly. Chelsea are rivalling Paris Saint-Germain for the Uruguayan midfielder by also matching his €60 million (£52m/$64m) release clause, and he is said to prefer a move to the Premier League.
Victor Osimhen (Napoli)
It remains to be seen which direction Chelsea will go in this summer when it comes to a centre-forward, with the possibility still there that Romelu Lukaku could make a sensational (second) return to Stamford Bridge. If they do opt to spend, one name who is undoubtedly high on their list is Napoli hotshot Victor Osimhen.
There is no doubting the Nigerian's quality in Serie A, but Chelsea will need to think long and hard about whether he can translate his prolific form to the Premier League - especially given Lukaku's struggles in 2021-22 and that he would cost northwards of £100m.
Moises Caicedo (Brighton)
The biggest obstacle to signing Moises Caicedo will be the competition Chelsea face from the Premier League's elite, but that shouldn't deter them from throwing their hat in the ring. The Blues attempted to bring him in in January, but were given short shift by Brighton, with Arsenal trying their luck soon after.
Though Caicedo went public with his desire to move on at the start of the year, his feelings may have changed after playing a huge part in guiding the Seagulls into the Europa League for next season. Chelsea must also consider that they are unlikely to be the Ecuadorian's first choice if he does choose to depart, given they cannot offer Champions League football while the likes of Arsenal and Manchester United are sniffing around him too, and he will surely command a whopping fee; do they really want to get drawn into a protracted tug-of-war that they cannot win?
Dusan Vlahovic (Juventus)
The apparent alternative to Osimhen seems to be Juventus' Dusan Vlahovic, but a difficult season for the Serb should serve as a cautionary tale. Chelsea are rumoured to be willing to splurge £70m ($87m) on the powerful frontman, despite the fact he has mustered just 10 league goals this season.
Again, the Blues' transfer negotiators, Paul Winstanley and Laurence Stewart, must give serious consideration to the risks tied up in such a deal given the club's tainted history with big-money strikers. Spending so much on Vlahovic after such an indifferent season would certainly cause a furore, and good PR should be paramount after such a nightmare first full season under Boehly and Eghbali's stewardship.
Vlahovic is another centre-forward who has the attributes to succeed in the Premier League, and Chelsea could roll the dice if they view this season as a blip, but it is a move that would smack of desperation from a club whose dire need for a goalscorer could be exploited this summer.
David Raya (Brentford)
If it's Premier League experience Pochettino seeks, then David Raya could be viewed as the solution to Chelsea's goalkeeping issues. The Spain international shares many of Onana's attributes, but could well come cheaper; Brentford value him at a lofty £40m (£49.5m), but he should be available for less as he stalls on a new deal, with his current contract expiring in 12 months' time.
The question he is whether Raya can be a significant upgrade on both Kepa and Mendy and be the difference between winning and losing. Although he is an astute shot-stopper, he doesn't keep too many clean sheets, although his ball-playing ability from the back makes him a real asset. Perhaps he shouldn't be their first-choice target, but he is a worthy back-up.
Lautaro Martinez (Inter)
Perhaps the dream alternative to Osimhen, Vlahovic or a Lukaku return, but also the transfer that seems the least likely at this stage. Chelsea should certainly be testing the waters, though.
Lautaro Martinez has enjoyed his fourth strong campaign in a row with Inter, where he has established himself as the attacking linchpin of the side. His physical style of play and devastating finishing ability suggest he would be suited to the rigours of English football, and the chance to work with his compatriot Pochettino could be enticing.
However, while it is always said that Inter are in financial trouble and therefore need to cash in on their biggest assets, Lautaro seems simply too valuable for the Nerazzurri to part with, and they are in a strong negotiating position with three years to run on his contract. It could be a case of turning the player's head with a wage package he cannot refuse.