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Chelsea Adds Boulahrouz, but Defense Still Not Finalized

Chelsea's defender situation is interesting: the club has just completed the signing of Dutch defender Khalid Boulahrouz from Hamburg, the signing of Ashley Cole hasn't even been mentioned in several days, and France center back William Gallas isn't even being mentioned by Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho when discussing his options in defense with reporters. Mourinho hailed his new signing's versatility, as he showed his ability to play across the back with Hamburg. "In a short squad and in a country where you can have only 16 players for a match, it's important to have cover for many positions," Mourinho said. "So, for example, now I can have Boulahrouz, Ricardo [Carvalho] and John [Terry] - three options for the center; I can have Paulo [Ferreira] and Boulahrouz - two options for the right side; I can have Boulahrouz and Wayne Bridge - two options for the left side." Conspicuous by his absence from the conversation was Gallas, one of the club's top performers last season and one of its longest-serving members. Gallas has been venting his frustration at being paid less than some other squad members who don't regularly play. He's also voiced his displeasure at being deployed at left back, when he feels he is better off in the center. Meanwhile, there's been nothing further regarding the on-going transfer dispute between Arsenal and Chelsea over the Gunners' Cole. If no deal is made before the deadline, Gallas may have to suffer through at least another four months with the Blues.

Read the whole story at The Guardian »

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