Chelsea are looking to sign a replacement for Cesc Fabregas before allowing him to make the move over to Monaco.
After struggling to nail down a regular starting XI place under Maurizio Sarri this season, Fabregas seems certain to be leaving the club, and he appeared to be waving an emotional goodbye to the Stamford Bridge crowd after Chelsea's FA Cup victory over Nottingham Forest on Saturday.
According to Sky Sports reporter Kaveh Solhekol, Fabregas has already agreed a three year deal to join Monaco when his contract runs out with Chelsea in the summer but, although he wants to make the move over to the Mediterranean coast now, the transfer may be put on hold until Sarri's side have a suitable replacement lined up.
The Blues are said to be close to securing deals for Cagliari's Nicolo Barella and Zenit's Leandro Paredes, with Sky Sports reporting that the club are close to securing deals for both players.
Barella has previously been been cited as a top target for Chelsea and the Italian international could end up costing the club as much as £45m.
Chelsea's pursuit for a Fabregas replacement mirrors the previous comments made by Sarri, who said, as per Sky Sports: "If Cesc will go, I think that we need to buy another player, and it's not easy because, technically, Cesc is a very important player."