The latest news from around Stamford Bridge as Chelsea and Frank Lampard prepare to face Southampton in the Premier League after the international break
Summer signing Malang Sarr has been sent to Portuguese champions FC Porto on a season-long loan. The 21-year-old will spend the year at Estadio do Dragão under manager Sergio Conceicão, competing with the likes of former Newcastle United defender Chancel Mbemba for a slot at centre-back.
Sarr was brought in on a free transfer this summer, and is one of the few left-footed central defensive options in Frank Lampard’s squad.
With potential transfers and loans for Antonio Rüdiger and Fikayo Tomori failing to materialise, Sarr has been deemed expendable from the Blues’ first-team squad.
The Frenchman will likely feature in this season’s Champions League group stage with Porto, who have been placed in Group C with Manchester City, Olympiacos and Olympique de Marseille.
At this early stage in Sarr’s career, a loan move to a top club where he is likely to feature often should be hugely beneficial.
Premier League clubs including Chelsea face a race against time to trim their bloated post-transfer window squads.
October 20th is the date set by the Premier League for clubs to have submitted their 25-man squad lists, with teams such as Arsenal and Chelsea facing a difficult task to involve each senior member of their first-team at present.
Clubs are permitted 25 players over the age of 21, but must register no more than 17 non-homegrown individuals. With Chelsea’s summer spending on various internationals, it presents Frank Lampard with some tough decisions.
He may be forced to offload some of the fringe members of his squad to clubs in Russia or Portugal where the transfer window remains open.
The likes of Reece James and Billy Gilmour will not need to be registered in the 25-man list as they qualify as under-21s and homegrown players, which will be a welcome reprieve to Lampard.
The domestic transfer window expires on October 16th, leaving just over a week to potentially jettison some first-team squad members to EFL clubs.
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Chelsea midfielder Tiémoué Bakayoko will be spending a third consecutive season away from the club, this time with SSC Napoli.
Bakayoko worked with Napoli manager Gennaro Gattuso previously during a loan stint with AC Milan, a destination the Frenchman was keen to return to.
However, Milan’s inability to offload midfielder Rade Krunić left Bakayoko with a problem heading into the final week of the international transfer window, according to SempreMilan.com.
Fortunately, his former coach Gattuso was keen to bring in the 26-year-old who failed to leave his mark at Chelsea. Last season was another relatively disappointing campaign for the defensive midfielder who spent the year with former club AS Monaco.
Bakayoko is said to have been angered by Milan’s inability or unwillingness to make a move for him, but the prospect of playing for Napoli under their charismatic boss and passionate fanbase is a favourable alternative.
Chelsea new signing today
Actu monde – NG – Frank Lampard to make big squad decision as Chelsea announce Sarr loan deal