Chelsea FC has several targets but it appears one has now been taken off the table. Diers Mertens of SSC Napoli was someone Frank Lampard planned to add but all those have now gone down the drain. The 33-year-old forward opted to re-sign with his current team despite most believing he would be moving out.
In a report from the Guardian, it appears Gli Azzurri found a way to convince Mertens to stay with the team. It appears the Belgian has agreed to a $171,500 weekly pay with Napoli. No details were revealed but the sudden move comes a bit of a surprise. Aside from Chelsea, Inter was also interested in getting him over to their side, offering him a three-year contract that would pay Mertens $208,000 a week.
Though he is already 33, Mertens has proven himself as someone who can still be deadly. Since joining Napoli in 2013, he has racked up 90 goals to date. Aside from that, he was a key figure when the club won the Champions League regulars. With the firepower he offers, it comes to no surprise why Lampard was keen on getting him to provide the Blues with added offense. Chelsea could end up losing some of its top stars if demands are not met. Among the players who could be exiting include Willian and Olivier Giroud.
Both Willian and Giroud were seeking long-term deals but Chelsea offered something short of their expectations. Willian wanted a three-year lease while Giroud wanted more than the one-year deal dangled to him. Willian has been linked to a possible move to Arsenal but all those could be doused soon.
Just recently, Lampard mentioned that one of the things that the Blues need to do is address the contract situations of key players. This would include Willian and Giroud who could be staying on. Given the financial constraints that most teams are facing right now, both are unlikely to get much longer with their demands. They could get long-term pacts but the amount of compensation they would get could dip immensely.
All those should be sorted out in the coming weeks. For now, Chelsea is set to resume training with plans to restart the season in early June. It won't be an easy transition for Lampard and his boys, most still wary of the threats that the COVID-19 pandemic brings. The Blues are at the fourth spot of the Premier League table, trying to catch up to Leicester City. They also need to maintain their standing with Manchester United giving chase. The Red Devils are only three points behind the Blues.