CHELSEA will look to bring in a new central midfielder in the January transfer window, according to reports.
And Ajax star Edson Alvarez, 24, is thought to be the Blues' main target.
Thomas Tuchel has been fielding a depleted midfield in recent weeks.
N'Golo Kante is out injured, Mateo Kovacic has only just returned from a lay-off, and Conor Gallagher is struggling to find the form he showed on loan at Crystal Palace last season.
Chelsea tried to address the situation on deadline day after suffering their second Premier League defeat of the season away at Southampton.
And it was a Saints player who they tried to steal away from St Mary's, but Tuchel's men saw a £50million bid for Romeo Lavia rejected.
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That was after, according to the Evening Standard, Ajax had told them that Mexican international Alvarez was not for sale despite Chelsea's £40m bid.
He has made 108 appearances for the Eredivisie champions, scoring nine goals and assisting a further five.
And following the sale of Antony to Manchester United, Ajax insisted they would not get rid of Alvarez, leading Chelsea to search for alternatives.
When their bid for Lavia was then declined by Southampton, they opted to secure a loan deal for Juventus man Denis Zakaria instead.
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Yet despite the arrival of Zakaria, new Chelsea owner Todd Boehly is still keen to strengthen further in the January window.
Dinamo Moscow's attacking midfielder Arsen Zakharyan, 19, is one option being discussed.
And they are also working on making Zakaria's move permanent, with the loan deal including an option to buy worth £26m.
Chelsea currently sit sixth in the Premier League table following three wins, one draw and two defeats from their opening six matches.
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