It’s certainly been an eventful summer for Chelsea despite the transfer ban FIFA imposed upon them earlier this year. As new coach Frank Lampard hasn’t been able to strengthen his squad (with the exception of Mateo Kovačić), the high number of outgoing players has raised some eyebrows. For the fans, however, the clearing out of the ‘deadwood’ has been a welcome sight and, if the most recent reports are to be trusted, they can look forward to quite a bit more of it happening before the European window officially concludes in two weeks.
According to French newspaper L’Equipe (via Sports Witness), AS Monaco seem highly interested in acquiring their former player Tiémoué Bakayoko. The Frenchman’s agent met with Monaco in the past few days and a deal is supposed to be struck sooner rather than later. Furthermore, Goal.com’s Nizaar Kinsella has reported that Davide Zappacosta could very well move to AS Rome on loan, with the Italian’s wanting an option to buy to be included. An outright sale unfortunately seems impossible at the moment as Roma’s hands are tied due to dealing with Finacial Fair Play restrictions.
The Chelsea careers of Zappacosta and Bakayoko can certainly be described as patchy, to put it kindly. While the former has stayed with the Blues for the past two seasons and even won two trophies along the way, the Italian international was never really able to tie down a starting spot at Stamford Bridge. The same can definitely be said of Bakayoko who never fully settled in London and whose performances certainly never justified his hefty price tag. As a result, potential suitors have been hard to come by, especially after the latter’s disappointing end to his loan spell in Milan.
Essentially, both players are most likely on the way out after being purchased for £22.50 million and £36 million during the summer of 2017, respectively. Their departures have been on the cards for a while now, but the current rumours and recent comments by Frank Lampard seem to confirm that their time at Chelsea really is coming to an end now. With Reece James hopefully returning from injury in approximately two to three weeks, it would make sense to see Zappacosta leave sometime around deadline day while Bakayoko’s departure may very well happen any day now.
In any case, the sales of the two will further declutter a squad which was in desperate need of ridding itself from some high earners on the club’s wage bill and will now be ready to see some serious investment come its way next summer. Ultimately, the departures of Zappacosta and Bakayoko are in the interest of both parties and will most certainly benefit Chelsea in the long run.
Written by Jimmy Funnell (@JimmyFunnelCFC on Twitter).