Chelsea transfer news: We look at what squad numbers are yet to be taken and who could potentially take them

Inside the Chelsea changing room
Chelsea are looking to add to their squad in the transfer window

Despite a strong start to the season, Thomas Tuchel’s men now find themselves well adrift of Manchester City in the race for the title after a run of 4 games without a win.

With a Carabao cup final date to look forward to against Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool in late February, this gives Tuchel a chance to win his third trophy with the Blues.

Chelsea will look to invest in order to close the gap to City and Liverpool. Here are a few squad numbers currently free at Chelsea and we also look ahead to see which numbers may become available in the summer.

Number 15

Kurt Zouma wore the number 15 shirt at Chelsea from the 19/20 up until his move to West Ham at the start of the 21/22 season. Now vacant and waiting to be taken, the most realistic taker could be Eden Hazard.

Although Hazard hasn’t worn the number 15 since his youth playing days with Belgium, the number has attracted a lot of wingers in the past, with Victor Moses, Mohamed Salah and Florent Malouda all having worn the number for Chelsea.

Looking ahead to the summer the 15 shirt could be one that the likes of Declan Rice or Aurelien Tchouameni could take if they sign on the dotted line in west London.

Number 23

The ‘23’ shirt belonged to Billy Gilmour during the 20/21 season and when his loan spell at Norwich finishes, he could well see that number taken by a potential arrival in January.

Ousmane Dembele has been heavily linked with a move to Stamford Bridge this month, having started his career at Stade Rennais wearing the number 23, it would make sense for Dembele to pick up the number if he makes the move to Chelsea.

Chelsea linked Sevilla centre back Jules Kounde currently wears ‘23’ at the Spanish club and could slot into the same number if he was to sign for the Blues.

Number 2

Currently occupied by Antonio Rudiger, the Chelsea no.2’s future is still yet to be resolved. With his contract due to expire at the end of the season. The no.2 shirt could become available if the German decides to leave the club.

Reece James could switch from no. 24 to no. 2 as he looks to nail down the right wing back role in the starting eleven.

Potential centre back signings such as Diego Carlos, Jules Kounde could be in the running for the no.2 shirt.

Number 17

Saul Niguez, on loan from Atletico Madrid is the current owner of the no.17 shirt. That shirt number looks likely to become available again in the summer as the loan deal for the Spanish midfielder doesn’t look likely to become permanent.

Past wearers of the no.17 include Mateo Kovacic, Mohamed Salah and Eden Hazard. If Hazard’s return becomes a reality, the no.17 could appeal to the Belgian in the summer.