According to a recent report by The Evening Standard, Premier League giants Chelsea are said to be reconsidering their winter interest in former academy star Nathan Ake, with concerns being raised by the scouting team about whether he would, in fact, be the right man for the role. The Blues have been in search of defensive reinforcements ever since their two-window transfer ban was cut short to just the one, and Ake has been one of the names linked.

The Blues, who were said to have embedded a £40m buy-back clause into the Dutchman’s contract, are now reluctant to get this deal done over tactical concerns. The report suggests that the backroom team is unsure whether he’d fit into a club where playing a high-line is mandatory, especially considering the horrendous form that his Bournemouth team have showcased defensively this season. The Dutch sensation has featured often for the Cherries this term and even started their most recent 3-0 home thrashing at the hands of a struggling Watford side.

Why Is Lampard Searching For Defensive Reinforcements?

The defence has undoubtedly been the Blues’ weakest link this season, and while some would argue that the lack of goals is a bigger problem, the presence of top-quality attackers in the side is sure to neutralise that issue in the long-run. At the back though, only German international Antonio Rudiger has been consistent enough to deserve recognition. Andreas Christensen, Kurt Zouma and Fikayo Tomori form the Blues’ other centre-half options – not names that would fill any manager with too much confidence.

Here Are Three Defensive Options That Lampard Must Consider:

Marash Kumbulla

The Albanian international is undoubtedly the least renowned out of all the defenders that the Blues are currently being linked with and would offer Lampard the best budget option in the short-term as well. Although a multitude of top European clubs are said to be after his signature, Chelsea are said to be in the driving seat and could be able to get this deal through the door for under £20m.

Issa Diop

The West Ham United youngster has had a mixed bag of a season in terms of consistency but has shown his quality on multiple occasions along the way. The Frenchman was a product of the Toulouse youth academy and has shown massive signs of improvement since making the switch to the London Stadium. The big centre-half tends to position himself superbly and read play pretty ably too.

Lewis Dunk

Undoubtedly the least risky option that Lampard could take, this proven Premier League star would be a quick fix to the Blues’ defensive woes. The Brighton man has been one of their standout performers over the last couple of seasons, and the fact that he pitches in with important goals and assists at key times could make him an even more valuable asset for Frank Lampard in the coming years.

Abhimanyu is the CEO of AM Infotrix, the support desk of The 4th Official.