Should Chelsea be successful in luring N’Golo Kante to Stamford Bridge from Leicester, one of the major misgivings about their 6/1 odds in the Premier League title betting will have been neutralised.
The Guardian report Kante to have told Leicester he wants to move to west London and that the two clubs have agreed a fee which could eventually rise to £29.2m.
In completing the capture, the Blues will have allayed suspicions that they lacked the pulling power to attract players capable of inspiring their speedy return to the top flight winners’ enclosure due to not being involved in European football next season.
Radja Nainggolan’s decision to snub a move to Chelsea earlier in the summer to stay Roma had seemed to add credence to that theory, but Kante’s arrival suggests otherwise.
Indeed their lack of Champions League or Europa League football could now be the bonus it has so often been perceived to be in past seasons.
The significant reduction in games and associated travel a purely-domestic campaign allows has proven advantageous for Liverpool in 2013/14 and Manchester United in 2014/15.
Luis Suarez dragged the Merseyside club to the brink of the title, while United where able to regain their Champions League status despite playing with fluency in about two games all season under Luis van Gaal.
Charged with taking advantage of their easier workload in relation to their peers is Antonio Conte, a man who took over Juventus in 2011/12 (after a seventh place finish the previous season) and won Serie A for the next three campaigns in succession.
Conte inherits virtually an identical squad to the one that won the league for Jose Mourinho in 2014/15, bar one or two of the more peripheral members.
A winning manager allied with a squad of winners a workload advantage over their rivals and the continued ability to attract players with the potential to improve the team makes Chelsea a fantastic bet to win the Premier League at 6/1.