Ludogorets Razgrad are considering raiding Chelsea for multiple loan signings during the summer transfer window.
Bruno Ribeiro, who claims to be a close friend of Blues boss Jose Mourinho, recently took charge of Ludogorets.
Ribeiro – a former Leeds and Sheffield United midfielder whose previous managerial roles include stints at Farense, Moura, Pinhalnovense and Vitoria Setubal in his native Portugal – wants to use his relationship with the Special One to bolster his squad ahead of the new season.
“Jose Mourinho is like a brother of mine,” Ribeiro told the Bulgarian press, according to The Guardian. “We talked about Ludogorets and he advised me to come here.
“It is possible that some Chelsea players will join Ludogorets [on loan]. I’ll talk with Mourinho and see what happens. Without doubt he is going to help us.”
It is unclear which players Ludogorets will target, but they are likely to have many to choose from. Chelsea sent their players out on loan in 43 different deals during the 2014-15 campaign, according to ESPN.
Ludogorets impressed in the Champions League last season, coming through the qualifying rounds to reach the last 32, before finishing fourth in Group B, behind Real Madrid, Basel and Liverpool.
The Bulgarian title-winners played some excellent passing football, especially Brazilian midfielder Marcelinho, who also impressed domestically, notching eight goals in 13 A PFG games.
If Ludogorets are keen on another Brazilian, their attention may be drawn to Wallace or Lucas Piazon, who were loaned out to Vitesse and Eintracht Frankfurt respectively last season.
A goalkeeper could be high on Ribeiro’s wanted, considering the issues Ludogorets had in that position last season.
Vladislav Stoyanov got sent off in the last minute of their Champions League qualifier against Steaua Bucharest, leaving defender Cosmin Moti between the sticks for the penalty shootout, in which he was an unlikely hero.
Ludogorets had more goalkeeping drama later in their European campaign, when Milan Borjan cost his side a precious point at Anfield by clumsily giving away a 90th-minute penalty, which Steven Gerrard converted to seal a 2-1 win for Liverpool.
Should Ludogorets ask Chelsea for a goalkeeper, their most likely options would be either Matej Delac, who was loaned out to FK Sarajevo earlier this year, or Jamal Blackman, who spent last season warming Middlesbrough’s bench.