Five Chelsea transfers Marina Granovskaia can copy to give Thomas Tuchel a new star


Thomas Tuchel’s current Chelsea squad is the envy of the vast majority of managers and players across Europe.

Not only does the German boast some of the best players in the Premier League at the moment, the blend of experience and youth within the group has been key to finding an ideal balance.

It’s a cohesion and variety that was crucial to the team winning the Champions League last season.

While a number of players in the squad have arrived at Stamford Bridge and been plugged in to play straight away, for others the journey hasn’t been so straightforward.

The Blues have occasionally been ridiculed for the loan army of players they send out from the capital to clubs across the continent.

However, it’s a system that has yielded some impressive results and some of the success stories of that blueprint are at the core of Chelsea‘s current first team.

Could Marina Granovskaia sanction a similar loan move in January to help mould a new star for Tuchel next season?

Andreas Christensen, Borussia Monchengladbach



Andreas Christensen made huge strides in his two years in Germany (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Andreas Christensen made huge strides in his two years in Germany (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)

After joining Chelsea in 2012 from Brondby, Christensen found it tough to break into the first team on a regular basis, so the call was made to send him out on loan.

In 2015 he was moved to Borussia Monchengladbach on a two-year temporary switch and that deal proved to be the making of the young defender.

In his debut term, Christensen was named as the team’s Player of the Year ahead of then captain Granit Xhaka and he impressed again the following season. Monchengladbach made a number of attempts to sign him permanently, but Chelsea resisted.

While there have been spells out of the team since returning to the Blues, Christensen is now a regular under Tuchel and has been crucial to the side performing so well with a three-man defence.

Trevoh Chalobah, Lorient



Trevoh Chalobah developed a lot on loan at Lorient last season (Photo by Marcio Machado/Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images)
Trevoh Chalobah developed a lot on loan at Lorient last season (Photo by Marcio Machado/Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images)

Although Kurt Zouma was solid enough for Chelsea when called upon last term, the fact the club were willing to let him go is perhaps testament to what they knew they had in Chalobah.

While the signing of Jules Kounde from Sevilla would have undoubtedly added extra class to the group, Blues fans would have taken pride in the performances of the young defender so far this season.

It’s no surprise that Chalobah looks ready for senior football after a prosperous spell on loan at Lorient last season, where he made 29 appearances in the French top flight.

Although he isn’t a guaranteed starter with the Blues yet, the 22-year-old has shown plenty early this season that suggests he has an important role to play for Tuchel in the coming months.

Reece James, Wigan Athletic



Reece James was fantastic on loan at Wigan (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)
Reece James was fantastic on loan at Wigan (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)

When rave reviews from Wigan Athletic fans started filtering their way back down south three years ago, it was clear Chelsea had someone very special in James.

During his season at the DW Stadium in 2018-19, the youngster operated in a number of positions for the Championship outfit and produced a string of all-action performances for the Latics.

At Wigan he won the Player of the Year, Players’ Player of the Year and Goal of the Season prizes.

Since returning to Chelsea his trajectory has remained upwards, culminating in his brilliant performance in the Champions League final win over Manchester City.

Among a number of high-class academy graduates at Chelsea in recent years, James has the potential to be the crown jewel.

Mason Mount, Derby County



Mason Mount thrived under Frank Lampard at Derby (Photo by Chloe Knott - Danehouse /Getty Images )
Mason Mount thrived under Frank Lampard at Derby (Photo by Chloe Knott – Danehouse /Getty Images )

When Frank Lampard was appointed Chelsea manager in 2019, it was clear that Mount would quickly become an important part of the team.

The pair had worked together during the previous season at Derby County, with the on-loan Blues playmaker helping the all-time Chelsea record goalscorer take the Rams to the Championship play-off final.

Eventually that campaign ended in disappointment for Derby, as they were beaten by Aston Villa in the final. However, for Mount the season proved to be a valuable learning experience and he returned to Chelsea battle-hardened after a campaign in the second tier, where he scored eight goals in 35 outings.

While Chelsea fans would love to see Mount find the back of the net more often in a blue shirt, the esteem with which he’s held in by Tuchel and England manager Gareth Southgate is a testament to the player he’s developed into.

Mateo Kovacic, Chelsea



Mateo Kovacic had a season on loan at Chelsea before joining on a permanent deal. (Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)
Mateo Kovacic had a season on loan at Chelsea before joining on a permanent deal. (Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

Kovacic is obviously a little different to the four players already mentioned, because the loan move that helped him make it at Chelsea was…at Chelsea.

The Croatia international joined the Blues on loan from Real Madrid for a season and although he failed to cement his place in the first team under manager Maurizio Sarri, the Blues activated a clause to land him permanently.

Since then, Kovacic has gone from strength to strength for Chelsea – he won Player of the Year at the end of the 2019-20 season – with his elegance and awareness in midfield making him a crucial player for Tuchel along with Jorginho and N’Golo Kante in midfield.

That initial season of integration and Premier League acclimatisation was key to him eventually becoming a big hit at the Bridge.





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