Even though the January transfer window has only been open for a week, Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino asserts that the club’s executives have not yet spoken with him who players to bring to Stamford Bridge for the winter.
The Blues have not made many transfers this January; instead, they have only let go of young players on loan or allowed those who were already out of the team to return for a brief period of time in an effort to find them new homes. This is in stark contrast to the previous transfer windows, during which they have spent more than £1 billion following the arrival of new owner and chairman Todd Boehly and his BlueCo. consortium in May 2022.
Young players like Alex Matos, who played just seven minutes in the Premier League away from Chelsea this season due to his terrible stint at Nottingham Forest, have been loaned to Huddersfield Town for a period of six months after making promising cameos under the Argentine manager.
youthful left back Zak Sturge was also called back from his loan at Peterborough United, albeit it’s believed that he was moved to a more suitable team. Though out-of-favor Ian Maatsen and even possible acting captain Conor Gallagher have been linked to leaving the Blues during January, there hasn’t been much discussion of players going the other way, which is surprising considering how Chelsea has often conducted business in recent years.
The calls to bring in an experienced outfield player or two have been louder than in previous windows given the young, raw nature of this Chelsea squad. Reports suggest that England international and former Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson is unhappy in Saudi Arabia after his summer move to Al-Ettifaq and may look for a return to the Premier League.
Pochettino was questioned about the prospect of bringing Henderson to Stamford Bridge during his press conference following the game. To be honest, we didn’t discuss names, he acknowledged. We are not currently discussing bringing players. Here in the manager’s office, with Paul Winstanley and Laurence Stewart, I met Behdad [Eghbali].
Since we will be in the training area tomorrow, I believe we will talk. We didn’t discuss positions or names; we didn’t discuss bringing in players. We are currently concentrating on guys like Andrey Santos to determine our course of action.”
While many may be concerned that Chelsea’s manager hasn’t seemed to fully explore the types of players he wants to add to a team that has recently struggled with consistency, it may not be entirely a bad indication that the team is approaching things more leisurely this month.
It’s quite simple to be sucked into the madness of the January transfer window, particularly if you’re competing with other teams to recruit players, but it doesn’t seem like the Blues are in that situation. Even though the club is unlikely to finalise the deals for players like Ivan Toney or Victor Osimhen in the next three weeks due to logistical and financial constraints, it might be wise for a team that has done nothing but spend hundreds of millions on young players to stand back, evaluate the situation, and then make a calculated, prudent choice.