First things first readers, I enjoyed the slight break from writing and needed it to recharge my interest in doing so. International tournaments don’t necessarily offer a great deal of opportunities for writing meaningful pieces about Chelsea and it seemed foolish to force it.
This summer a great deal of Blues supporters have been frustrated by the business that the club has done. It has shipped out several promising youth players on loan or permanent deals. The latter deals included the beloved Fikayo Tomori and his presumed replacement, Marc Guehi, to AC Milan and Crystal Palace respectively. Neither one of these was a bad move for the club. In the end, Chelsea does not have as many openings along the back line as many people would like to believe. Even with Thomas Tuchel’s back three likely staying in place for the foreseeable future, the starters are pretty entrenched in their roles.
Chelsea has conducted good business thus far, despite popular opinion.
Tuchel is on the record as saying that if Cesar Azpilicueta is fit then he must start because of what he represents; not only on the field, but off it, about Chelsea’s mentality. Thiago Silva is very much the same and Antonio Rudiger is too. Behind them, both Andreas Christensen and Kurt Zouma are fully fledged international players worth upwards of £25 million. It’s just unrealistic to presume that for three spots and five excellent professionals, two youth players are going to be able to jump ahead of them in the queue.
1. The details of the sales
Both Tomori and Guehi need to get minutes and the deals to sell them were actually both pretty good. Tomori’s was for a decent sum and Chelsea does need to show something of a cash injection on the books. Guehi’s deal was even better as the Blues were able to get a good bit of cash into the club in the £20 million fee. They still retain the right to match any sale offers that Crystal Palace could receive for the player, as well. Guehi’s deal actually represents the sort of deal that I believe is going to become more common in football as FIFA changes the loan rules. Teams are going to have to sell players (rather than loan them) and I do believe in the end, this will be better for football as a whole. More players will get opportunities and larger clubs will not be able to stockpile talent and ruin careers at such a large clip any longer. Guehi’s deal is simply the first time that Chelsea has done something like this, but will likely provide the framework for the Blues moving forward.
It is particularly suitable for Chelsea because it also means that it was able to send Conor Gallagher to the same club on loan. He and Guehi will now be able to support one another and get experience together for at least a year before I believe, at some point, they both come back and play meaningful roles for Chelsea in two to three years’ time.
Now let’s address transfers.