Chelsea's dream XI: How the Blues wanted to line up this season

Martin Macdonald
Erling Haaland has 49 goals in 49 appearances for Borussia Dortmund

Chelsea have had a very positive transfer window in that they secured two massive signings while ending up in profit after deadline day.

The Blues won the Champions League in 2020/21 meaning that their squad did not require much surgery heading into the summer.

In the Premier League, though, Jorginho was actually the club's top goalscorer which highlighted the need for a top-class centre-forward to arrive, with Timo Werner struggling to hit the heights of his time at RB Leipizig.

In the end, Romelu Lukaku completed a sensational return to Stamford Bridge after Chelsea paid inter a fee of £97 million (€115m).

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Lukaku has already proved a good acquisition, scoring within 15 minutes of his second debut for the club against Arsenal.

However, it would not out of line to suggest that the Belgian was arguably not Chelsea's first choice for the centre-forward spot.

At the top of that list was Erling Haaland, whom Chelsea attempted to sign from Borussia Dortmund.

Crazy speculated transfer fees were mentioned, but Dortmund ultimately stayed firm on their stance of not selling the Norwegian this summer after already letting Jadon Sancho leave for Manchester United.

If Haaland was available at a price acceptable to the Blues, it is likely he would be at Stamford Bridge currently, and not Lukaku, even if the latter remains a fabulous acquisition.

Chelsea's first primary target over the summer proved to be Achraf Hakimi, but the Inter wing-back ultimately decided to join Paris Saint-Germain instead.

As for the centre of defence, a deal for Jules Kounde was negotiated right up until deadline day, but eventually collapsed after Sevilla allegedly bumped up their asking price to €60m.

Saul Niguez was signed on deadline day as Thomas Tuchel added another quality player in midfield.

Declan Rice was previously a target, though those rumours died down slightly after Frank Lampard left Chelsea.

Chelsea's wishlist XI

Chelsea wishlist XI

Edouard Mendy would still have started in goal, though he would have had a fresh face just ahead to the right in the form of Kounde, had that deal gone through.

The Frenchman would likely have been part of a back three with Thiago Silva and Antonio Rudiger as first choice, though Cesar Azpilicueta, Trevor Chalobah and Andreas Christensen would still be involved.

Despite Reece James' excellence, the pursuit of Hakimi might have dented the England international's confidence a bit. After all, it was one of the reasons why youth team Player of the Year Toni Livramento left for Southampton.

On the left, it remains a toss up between Ben Chilwell and Marcos Alonso.

Saul and Matteo Kovacic will see plenty of game time this season, but N'Golo Kante and Jorginho remain the first-choice pairing.

In attack, Haaland would have been in the number nine role instead of Lukaku, with Mason Mount and Kai Havertz retaining their spots just in behind.

Werner, Hakim Ziyech, Christian Pulisic and Callum Hudson-Odoi continue to be available in reserve.