Chelsea has become as loyal to signing players from Ligue 1 as we all are to our favourite food retailers; you might be a Sainsbury’s person, I might be a Tesco guy, and everyone knows that friend who’s a Marks and Spencers customer in denial.
And, the west Londoners in typical west London fashion – you guessed – are the latter, but enough of the retail food analogies because the European champions have been urged to revisit the French transfer market ahead of the summer.
Ligue 1 has been identified as Chelsea’s transfer safe haven at the end of the season following a dry January and mixed success signing players from other leagues.
Daniel Childs spoke to football.london’s Chelsea correspondent Adam Newson live on the Carefree Chelsea ‘Marina’s Notebook’ show to delve into what the summer transfer window holds for Tuchel and the Blues’ scouting entourage.
Newson kickstarted the discussion by highlighting how players from Ligue 1 enjoy a smoother transition to life at Stamford Bridge.
“It does seem an easier bridge to cross coming from French football to the Premier League,” he said.
“I saw something on Twitter a while ago which looked at different leagues around Europe and then working out players’ success rate after making a transition, and Ligue 1 was top, so it does make sense from a Chelsea perspective to be looking in that division.”
Newson added by referencing the success of Essien, who joined Chelsea from Marseille in 2005 in a deal worth approximately £24m, but did also accept the risk at hand by noting the infamous arrival of Tiemoue Bakayoko.
“They have had very successful signings from Ligue 1 before – the one that instantly comes to mind is Michael Essien for me for what he offered Chelsea instantly,” he said.
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“Yes, caveat it with, ‘what about Bakayoko,’ but everyone gets one wrong every once in a while. Look at the man he played alongside at Monaco – Fabinho – and how good he’s been at Liverpool.
“I wouldn’t just be looking in Ligue 1, of course, but it seems a good division to jump over from if you’re coming to the Premier League.”
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