Media Watch: Chelsea linked to Inter Milan centre-backs, Demba Ba announces retirement and BBC journalist backs Lukaku to keep scoring

In our look at the latest Chelsea-related news stories from the media, the Blues have been linked to Alessandro Bastoni and Milan Skriniar while Demba Ba announces his retirement from football.

These stories are samples pulled from external media sources. They do not represent the views or position of Chelsea Football Club.

Chelsea linked to Serie A centre-backs

The Blues are reportedly interested in Inter Milan centre-backs Alessandro Bastoni and Milan Skriniar.

According to Sport Mediaset in Italy, Chelsea will now turn their attention to Serie A as they continue their search for another centre-back.

‘Bastoni would represent the more inexperienced option for Chelsea as the 22-year-old is only in his third season with Inter,’ the report states.

‘Skriniar meanwhile has been linked with a move to the Premier League for several years following his impressive performances for Inter.’

The two defenders played crucial parts in Inter Milan’s Serie A triumph last season under former Blues boss Antonio Conte. The report also states that Romelu Lukaku recommended the centre-backs after playing with them in Italy.

Bastoni’s current contract runs out in the summer of 2024 after signing an extension in May, while Skriniar’s deal is set to expire in one year.

Demba Ba announces retirement

Former Blues striker Demba Ba has revealed he is retiring from football after 16 years.

Announcing on Twitter, the Senegalese penned an emotional letter thanking all those who have been involved in his career.

‘It is with a heart filled with gratefulness that I announce the end of my playing career,’ he wrote. ‘What a journey it has been. Besides all the sweat and tears I have faced, football has given me so many beautiful emotions.

‘From the passion of the fans and the noise coming from the stands after every goal to the connection with my team-mates on and off the field, this will forever remain in my head and heart.’

The striker spent two seasons with the Blues, scoring 14 goals in 51 games. He was also part of the side that won the Europa League in the 2012/13 season.

BBC journalist praises Lukaku

BBC writer Garth Crooks says he would pick Romelu Lukaku over Cristiano Ronaldo to play centre-forward.

The football pundit added the Belgian striker to his Team of the Week again after the 28-year-old’s brace against Aston Villa.

‘If I had to make a choice of playing Ronaldo or Lukaku at centre-forward there would be no contest,’ he said. ‘It would be Lukaku every time.

‘However, there is a touch of irony in the fact that Lukaku used to play for United and scored some magnificent goals.’

The Belgian scored his first goal at Stamford Bridge in his 15th appearance at the ground. He is currently tied second in the Premier League goalscoring charts.

‘It will also be interesting to see who scores more goals,’ Crooks added. ‘Although I put my money on Lukaku.

‘His two against Aston Villa were the clearest indication I have seen of how the Belgian striker’s game has developed.’