Chelsea closing in on new recruitment head just months after he swapped Manchester City for Southampton

The Blues are continuing their off the field recruitment drive

Chelsea FC Club Crest - Image ID: DD6080

Chelsea are closing in on another shock addition as they look to rebuild their club following Todd Boehly’s takeover, this time on the verge of adding Director of Recruitment Joe Shields to their ranks just months after Southampton managed to pinch him from Manchester City.

Shields has a strong reputation within the game, and it was regarded as a massive coup for the Saints to land him in July. Top young talent followed him, with Manchester City quartet Gavin Bazunu, Romeo Lavia, Sam Edozie and Juan Larios all making the move South to St Mary’s, while 19-year-old Sekou Mara and 21-year-old Arnel Bella-Kotchap also both arrived as they looked to inject more youth into the ranks of Ralph Hassenhutl’s side.

Such was the impression made by Lavia in particular during the opening weeks of the season that Chelsea had a £50m offer turned down for the midfielder towards the end of the transfer window.

Now, they have instead gone to the source, with an agreement with the man who brought the player to the south coast now in the final stages.

Shields is not the only new face in the Chelsea hierarchy. Following the departures of Bruce Buck, Marina Granovskaia and Petr Cech, an entirely new footballing body is being assembled. Christopher Vivell has arrived from RB Leipzig as Technical director, while there is still hope that another will come in as a new Sporting Director, though the right man has yet to be found, with RB Salzburg’s Cristophe Freund having turned down the opportunity.

With the Blues set to move operating method to a more self-sustaining model rather than the lavish Roman Abramovich spending option, a new head of recruitment with such a strong track record is a good start.

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Ben Browning

Ben Browning

Football writer and analyst. Long-time writer of all things Arsenal and avid watcher of European football. Happy to discuss all things football over on Twitter.

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