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Chelsea must sign their own Van Dijk, says Leboeuf

Chelsea, Virgil van Dijk, Chelsea
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Frank Lampard should seek to sign a ‘big guy’ like Virgil van Dijk for Chelsea in this summer’s transfer window, says Frank Leboeuf.

Chelsea have already spent €93m on signing Timo Werner (€53m) and Hakim Ziyech (€40m) to reinforce their attack for next season, with Kai Havertz likely to follow.

Another player on their radar is Leicester City left-back Ben Chilwell as Lampard isn’t sold on his current options, Marcos Alonso or Emerson Palmieri.

But while these new arrivals certainly promise a bright future at Stamford Bridge, Leboeuf feels a new center-back should be at the top of Lampard’s list of priorities.

The former defender, who collected two FA Cups and the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup as part of the six trophies won during his time as a Blue between 1996 and 2001, feels another Van Dijk would tick all the boxes for the club’s defensive woes.

On the challenges facing Lampard, Leboeuf told ESPN: “[He needs to improve] all of them. That’s the problem.

“The goalkeeper is a big issue, but you have to go to the main [issue]. If you’re looking at the main issue, it’s the central defenders.

“[Kurt] Zouma is doing great, but I’m not confident about [Antonio] Rudiger, I’m not confident about [Andreas] Christensen. I don’t know what will happen with [Fikayo] Tomori, but I think they need a big guy.

“You saw what happened with Liverpool when they got Van Dijk, he changed everything. Even Lovren and Gomez looked better alongside him.

“You need a big guy to make sure he’ll lead the defense. Look at Ramos. [Raphael] Varane is a fantastic player, but is he still the fantastic player when he plays for France as when he plays for Madrid with Sergio Ramos? He’s better with Real Madrid.

“They need a big guy in the center of defense, yeah.”