Chelsea’s £260m transfer budget ‘approved by Abramovich’ irrelevant of top four

Roman Abramovich is ready to sanction a £260million spending spree at Chelsea this summer regardless of whether they finish in the top four or not, according to reports in Italy.

The Blues racked up a record transfer bill in the previous summer and autumn window, backing then-manager Frank Lampard with close to £225million worth of new signings.

Unfortunately for Lampard, the likes of Timo Werner, Kai Havertz and Hakim Ziyech failed to take his side to the next level, and when they embarked on a nightmare run of five defeats in eight matches throughout December and January he was replaced by Thomas Tuchel.

Tuchel is yet to lose as Chelsea head coach, taking 14 points out of 18 so far in the Premier League, but he faces a battle to secure Champions League football for next season.

As things stand the west London club are only two points adrift of the top four, but Liverpool, Everton, Aston Villa and Tottenham are also hot on their heels and will provide competition for qualification.

Even if they fail to make it into the Champions League again next season, though, Italian outlet Tutto Mercato claim Abramovich is prepared to offer Tuchel an eye-watering £260million transfer budget in the summer – and his top target is Erling Haaland.

The Blues owner is desperate to get his hands on Europe’s top prizes again, meaning he will whip out his chequebook in spectacular style despite their record spend last summer.

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  • And to make it happen he wants to sign Haaland, 20, who has scored 43 goals in as many appearances for Dortmund since joining from Red Bull Salzburg in January 2020.

    The Norwegian striker will see a £65million release clause inserted into his contract in the summer of 2022, with a host of top European clubs eyeing up his signature.

    However, Abramovich is reportedly planning to beat the competition and launch an offer for him in the next summer transfer window.

    The Russian’s £260million budget will allow him to hand Dortmund a blank cheque for Haaland, who is also wanted by Manchester United, Manchester City and Barcelona.

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