CHELSEA have finally completed a stunning free transfer for legendary centre-back Thiago Silva.
The Brazilian has penned a one-year deal with Frank Lampard’s side and could have it extended for another 12 months in 2021.
Silva is the latest arrival at Stamford Bridge this summer, with Leicester City left-back Ben Chilwell joining a few days earlier for £50million.
RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner and Ajax playmaker Hakim Ziyech were captured by Chelsea before the end of the Premier League season.
And even if he doesn’t make any more signings, despite Kai Havertz being expected to join from Bayer Leverkusen, Lampard can field a number of exciting teams and formations as he looks to close the gap on Liverpool.
The first option for the Englishman is to go with his trademark 4-3-3 system.
That is likely to see Werner deployed as a No9, with Ziyech drifting in from the right and Christian Pulisic darting into the box from the left.
N’Golo Kante is sure to get the holding role in midfield, with Mateo Kovacic the playmaker and Masont Mount the bundle of energy going from box to box.
In defence, Reece James looks set to become the established first-choice right-back ahead of captain Cesar Azpilicueta, with new arrival Chilwell mirroring his attacking runs down the left.
Brazilian ace Silva is sure to slot straight into the defence, with Kurt Zouma arguably the right choice to partner him ahead of Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen after making visible progress last season.
In goal, club-record signing Kepa Arrizabalaga could continue ahead of veteran Willy Caballero if Chelsea end up failing to sign a new shot stopper.
Should Lampard want to go more attacking, he could tweak his system to 4-2-3-1.
That could see the personnel remain the same, except for striker Olivier Giroud replacing midfielder Mount.
Werner’s versatility could see him go as an inside-forward on the left, feeding off Giroud’s world-class first touch.
Pulisic would switch to the right, with Ziyech operating as a No10 and causing havoc through the channels, while also covering the left when Werner runs centrally.
The third option for Lampard is the 3-4-3 formation which helped Chelsea seal a Champions League spot before failing to make an impact in the FA Cup final defeat to five-defender specialists Arsenal.
That switch would see Chilwell and James flank Kovacic and Kante, with Pulisic, Werner and Ziyech returning as the front three.
Zouma and Silva would also stay in the side, with skipper Azpilicueta coming in as the right-sided centre-back to protect Kepa.