Carlo Ancelotti has made a dramatic attempt to win the race to sign Carlos Tevez by telephoning him personally.
The new Chelsea manager called Tevez after obtaining the number from the striker's Argentina colleague Hernan Crespo and stressed he sees him as an integral part of his plans.
Crespo, who worked with Ancelotti when loaned by Chelsea to Milan four years ago, helped the Italian make contact with Tevez and Sportsmail understands they spoke on Sunday.
Ancelotti is spreading his net as far as possible in the hope ofsecuring players to strengthen the squad he inherits at the start ofnext month and sees Tevez, who has been frustrated by a lack of gamesat Manchester United, as a key element in the changes.
Kaka, David Villa and Franck Ribery topped Chelsea's list of transfer targets but Kaka has gone to Real Madrid and the other two are likely to follow - even if Chelsea remain determined to lure Ribery from Bayern Munich.
Sergio Aguero is another player under consideration, with talks having taken place with representatives for the Atletico Madrid striker.
Manchester City remain the most likely destination for Tevez, who is available for £25million when his loan deal at Old Trafford finishes at the end of this month.
But Ancelotti is known to be an admirer of the hard-working striker and if he can convince him to move to Stamford Bridge he will ask Roman Abramovich to meet the asking price set by Kia Joorabchian and his investors.
In the meantime, two players who were signed by Ancelotti's predecessors could be gone before the Italian takes over.
Jose Mourinho wants Ricardo Carvalho at Inter Milan, having signed him for Chelsea from Porto in 2004, as well as Deco.
The Stamford Bridge hierarchy are prepared to let both go. While 31-year-old Carvalho remains one of the finest centre halves in Europe when he is fit, his injury problems have left Chelsea to conclude it would make more sense to sell him for what they insist will be a high price. He cost them £20m five years ago.
In Portuguese newspaper O Jogo on Monday, Carvalho condemned Chelsea for a lack of support while knee and thigh problems sidelined him for much of the season.
Carvalho said: 'I hope Chelsea and Inter can reach an agreement for me. I was injured for much of last season, and was not happy and Chelsea can't have been happy with what I did in the past year. I believe that my time at Chelsea is reaching an end
'Everything is fine when you are fit to play, but there is no support when things are not going so well. I am happy that a big club such as Inter is interested in me and ideally I will leave this year.'
Inter president Massimo Moratti said: 'Mourinho has asked us for Deco and Carvalho and we are working towards making him happy.'
Yuri Zhirkov is another Chelsea target but on Monday the CSKA Moscow defender declared a desire to join Barcelona.
'Several weeks have passed since those rumours came out that I had signed a contract with Chelsea and I am still at CSKA Moscow,' he has been quoted saying. 'My team is Barcelona and that is where I want to play.'
Chelsea have offered AZ Alkmaar a loan-back option on Moussa Dembele in an effort to win the race for the £15m-rated Belgium striker.