There were always going to be casualties from Andre Villas-Boas’ Chelsea revolution but nobody expected the axe to be wielded so forcefully so soon. Already a host of big-names have either been alienated or put firmly in their place and according to various reports there could be anywhere up to six high profile departures in the coming weeks. The Cutter looks at the names that have been mentioned and where they might go…

Alex –

Rumours that both Spurs and Arsenal were sniffing around remained precisely that; rumours. Interest from Juventus however seems to have more substance and certainly tentative enquires have been made.

The Italians could be made to pay for their dallying though as it now seems that QPR have stolen a march on signing the out-of-favour Brazilian centre-back. Mark Hughes has identified the heart of his defence as the priority area to strengthen (as Warnock did also) and after being rebuffed with a £5m bid for his preferred target in Christopher Samba has now turned his attentions to the Bridge.

The player meanwhile has stated that his desired destination is a return to his former club Santos.

Salomon Kalou –

Pushed further down the pecking order by the sensational emergence of Daniel Sturridge the Ivorian has become a surprise target for Arsenal. Wenger has declared admiration for the striker in the past but this has more than a tabloid ‘2+2’ equation to it due to Kalou being out of contract at the end of this season which has pushed down his transfer value to a bargain £3m.

If Wenger moves on the perennially lacklustre Arshavin this Jan expect a firm bid to be made though there are two significant obstacles that hinder the move. Firstly the player is away at the Africa Cup of Nations until early February and, most troublesome of all, the ex-Feyenoord graduate has baulked at Chelsea’s offer of seventy grand a week insisting closer to ninety is more appropriate.

We cannot see the penny-pinching Prof being prepared to pay anything like that amount.

Frank Lampard –

Ah Fat Frank. Though it is Terry who has been given the dubious monker of ‘Mr Chelsea’ it’s impossible to conjure up any image of the blues’ recent successes without ‘Lamps’ placing ‘Lamps’ front and centre.

After a decade of sterling service – during which he smashed a top flight record with 164 consecutive Premier League appearances – it seems he has finally crossed the Stamford Bridge with AVB patently not regarding the midfielder as part of his future plans.

Recent interest from PSG – and a rather fanciful link back to West Ham – pales to the persistent rumour that Manchester United are preparing a move.

This is fascinating because it is equally as plausible as it is far-fetched.

With Chelsea all but out of the title running it is not beyond the realms of possibility that Villas-Boas would be amenable to the switch and Lampard is certainly the ideal candidate to fill the central void United are desperate to fill. Furthermore it’s not just his indisputable quality that would appeal to Ferguson but also the player’s age; along with the experience he’s bring Lampard’s waning powers would dovetail perfectly with the emergence of Cleverley. The smooth handing over of the mantel is something the United gaffer hoped would occur with Scholes until his ‘premature’ retirement forced the Old Trafford over-lord to blood his young star too soon.

Another aspect that has not been mentioned elsewhere is the recent sacking of his partner Christine Bleakley from the ITV show Daybreak. A return to the BBC is on the cards, an organisation that has now relocated to Salford.

Don’t underestimate the influence of a fit lass.

The unhappy former Lyon flyer may have to kick his heels on the Chelsea bench until the summer .

Florent Malouda –

The French wide man’s Chelsea career lies in tatters following his recent frustrated outburst aimed towards the club’s hierarchy. A return to France looks very much on the cards with Paris St Germain leading the chase but the question is not whether Malouda goes – or even to where – but when his departure is permitted.

The unhappy former Lyon flyer may have to kick his heels on the Chelsea bench until the summer unless there is sufficient movement in the opposite direction. Which remains unlikely at this point.

Paulo Ferreira –

Alex aside, the likeliest of all the fringe players to be released this month because his departure is not reliant on replacements being drafted in. The Portugese defender has been inconsistent for much of his seven year spell in the capital and its testament to his usefulness as a utility man that it has taken this long for his exit to be so imminent.

It is highly unlikely he will remain in Britain but there will be no shortage of interest in a capable, if limited, player with over sixty international caps to his name who will be made available on the cheap. This has alerted Benfica amongst others.

Jose Bosingwa –

Villas-Boas has been fairer to the Portugese full-back than any of his predecessors, giving him a regular run in the side and an opportunity to show his worth. Unfortunately Bosingwa has failed to reproduce the form that enticed Mourinho into splashing out £16m to bring his name-sake over with him from Porto.

After only being given a one-year extention to his contract back in July (something that greatly disappointed the Congolese-born defender) Besiktas began sniffing around and their interest hasn’t waned.

With the expected arrival of Gary Cahill Chelsea will slide Ivanovic over to right-back meaning Bosingwa either moves this month or face another long spell on the sidelines.