Chelsea did make a signing during the January transfer window this term, despite the majority being relatively quiet from a Blues’ perspective.
The Londoners sealed the signing of Charlton Athletic prospect Mason Burstow for an undisclosed fee, with the 18-year-old set to return to The Valley on-loan for the remainder of the campaign.
Whilst the signing of a young forward might not be grabbing too many headlines in the grand scheme of things, it is a deal that is reminiscent of one that the club committed to back in 2012.
Having made just two appearances for Nottingham Forest, who were then in the Championship, young striker Patrick Bamford became a Chelsea player for a reported £1.5m in the closing stages of the January transfer window.
Then just 18-years-old, the now Leeds United forward was signed due to his immense potential and whilst it did not quite work out for him at Stamford Bridge having never made an appearance for the club, it was a deal that the Blues used to their advantage.
Following loan spells with Milton Keynes Dons, Derby County, Middlesbrough, Crystal Palace, Norwich City and finally Burnley, Bamford eventually departed for £5.5m – some way above the Blues initial outlay.
Becoming a Middlesbrough player, the striker went from strength to strength as he netted 13 goals in his first full season at the Riverside.
That earned him a move to Leeds United and Bamford is now one of the most highly-valued English forwards in the Premier League.
After spearheading the Whites’ promotion charge, he then netted 17 goals in the top-flight and sits at a transfermarkt valuation of £18m – 12 times the original amount Chelsea paid for him.
Whilst it may have been understandable for Bamford to hold regret over his time in west London, he has previously stated that he is thankful for the role his Chelsea career played in his development.
Talking in 2021, he said: “When I signed there (Chelsea), I obviously had the dream of breaking into the first team.
“I don’t have any regret or resent them for not getting a chance, because at the time they were winning the Premier League, winning the Champions League and were one of the best teams in Europe.”
So, whilst Burstow’s career trajectory might turn out to be wildly different to Bamford, the two forwards started their career in remarkably similar fashion, having caught eyes with their performances in the EFL.