Chelsea reportedly agree £40m deal for Premier League Star
What's the story?
The transfer window will close in a couple of days and Chelsea are all set to go out on a high. According to The Sun, Chelsea and Arsenal have agreed a £40m fee for 23-year-old winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
However, personal terms are yet to be agreed and Conte will need to convince the Ox that he will be more than just a squad rotation player.
Liverpool still remain optimistic about securing Chamberlain's services and have not bowed out of the race for his signature yet.
In case you didn't know...
Oxlade-Chamberlain was offered a whopping £180,000-a-week contract at Arsenal. But he chose to turn it down, thereby making it clear that he wants a move away from the Emirates.
Arsene Wenger has been vocal about wanting Ox to stay. The Arsenal manager added that he expects Chamberlain to stay and honor his contract at the club.
Alex Oxlade Chamberlain has only one year left on his contract just like Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez.
The heart of the matter
Arsenal have a lot of dead-weight lying around. They also need to make space on their payroll. On the other side, Chelsea are desperate to increase the size of their squad.
After having loaned out a host of young talent and sold the rest of them, Chelsea have the smallest squad among the top 6. To make this difference disappear, Conte wants to bring in home-grown talent and has also made moves for Danny Drinkwater of Leicester City and Ross Barkley of Everton.
As they make a return to the UEFA Champions League after a one-year absence, Conte will want to ensure that fatigue won't drive them to the ground and it is imperative that they enhance the depth of their squad to keep the energy levels up.
Arsenal are more likely to do business with Chelsea than Liverpool. It has been this way since the infamous £40m+1 cheeky bid that the Gunners made for Luis Suarez back in 2013.
However, there are reports emerging from various media outlets that Ox prefers a move to Anfield over Stamford Bridge.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has immense talent but needs to deliver on a consistent basis. He seems to have run out of steam at Arsenal. A change of management could get Chamberlain to raise his game and become the player that he can be.
However, in Conte's system, he will need to get used to playing as a wing back. Tracking back and defending will be cardinal to the role he will don at Chelsea and these are two departments that Ox is not famous for.
As it stands, it looks like a move that will benefit the 23-year-old because if Arsenal's form in the first 3 weeks of the PL is anything to go by, it's a sinking ship. And Ox will find it hard to turn away from the rope that he's being handed.