This January, Chelsea’s resolution to fill an evident gap for another striker, was to purchase Demba Ba from Newcastle. He is now injured, leaving them short up top once more. However, was his signing really necessary?
Thirty four loans. That is the total number of loan deals Chelsea have agreed this season. No players borrowed, all of them allowing players to leave the club for a period of time. Currently there are twenty three players looking to impress away from Stanford Bridge. Surely this seems a little excessive for a club struggling to maintain any sort of title challenge?
Internationals like Romelu Lukaku, Kevin De Bruyne and Michael Essien all out on loan at clubs who could certainly challenge Chelsea themselves. Even players like Jeffrey Bruma and Thibaut Courtois who have been capped at senior level, find themselves shipped out and devoid of even a sniff of first team action for the Blues.
This begs this question, instead of making stop gap signings, why not give some of these players a chance? Lukaku has outscored Torres in the Premier League this year. Essien is helping mount an assent for European glory while Courtois is preventing Madrid from the second spot in La Liga at Atletico.
With this in mind, especially the Belgian striker currently at West Brom, you would think the sensible for Benitez to recall him seeing as he has technically outperformed the £50m Spaniard this season. It would give his side a significant boost in firepower and after all at this rate, shouldn’t Torres be the one out on loan?
Chelsea’s policy of signing promising youngsters only to simply dispatch them out at the first opportunity does not seem to be working. Exciting prospects like Courtois and De Bruyne are being bought to be loaned. In fact, seven of the players the London club have loaned have been loaned out before even a glimpse of John Terry and co.
The only seeming youngster to not have been loaned out and remain in the first team is Nathan Aké, signed from Feyenoord in 2011, who has made a first team appearance this season. And looking at their squad, no-one currently in the squad has benefited from a loan before stepping up. So it looks like this method of loaning does not seem to help the Blues.
Of course, some of the players currently away from London like Eden Hazard’s younger sibling Thorgan and Gael Kakuta, both currently out on loan, could still have promising careers but it seems like it will be away from the Bridge.