16th July 2021 , Chelsea Transfer News Roundup

Olivier Giroud

Giroud today has signed a deal lasting until 2023 at AC Milan and will wear the number 9 shirt next season. (86Longo)

Davide Zappacosta

SempreInter have continued their Zappacosta to Inter Milan rumours by announcing the right back is “waiting for a call from Inter”.

Inter Milan and Arsenal have “gridlocked” in talks over Hector Bellerin which opens the doors for Zappacosta to become Inters first choice right back target.

Henry Lawrence

Football Insider reported today the AFC Wimbledon have registered their interest in Chelsea youth starlet Henry Lawrence for a potential season-long loan deal.

At 19 and being a regular starter for the U23’s, the option to send him out on loan for senior minutes has become a suitable possibility.

Lawrence is widely known for his versatility which makes him an exciting prospect who will look to impress whilst out on loan in League 1.

Erling Haaland

Doubts of the Haaland deal are in full force today as Dortmund make it clear that Haaland will not be involved in a player swap deal.

Dortmund hierarchy have made it clear to the manager that the team should go ahead as normal and should plan with Haaland being in the starting eleven for next season.

David Ornstein on Sky today said “The view from people I speak to around Chelsea is that Borussia Dortmund are not going to sell— I think it’s most likely that Haaland will stay at Dortmund and leave next summer”. Of course next summer all but entirely means we have zero chance in the signing Haaland as the likes of of Real Madrid, Man City and Barcelona will all be in the mix for the Norwegian.

The only semi-positive news coming out around the Haaland deal is that Erling Haaland’s dad Alfie Haaland and agent Mino Raiola are aware of ‘concrete interest’ from Chelsea. (Julien Laurens)

Emerson Palmieri

Calcio Mercato via The Sun today have revealed that Roma have entered the race for Emerson.

Emerson played for Roma for three years and now it looks like they are interested in bringing the Italian back.

Emerson’s stock is at an all time high due to his part in the successful Italy Euro 2020 campaign when he stepped in to replace an injured Spinazzola.

Chelsea will be looking to cash in on Emerson this summer as funds are being raised for big-money signings.

Alejandro Balde

Chelsea have been unsuccessful in their approach for the young Barcelona left back according to Mundo Deportivo. Balde (just 17-years-old) has decided to sign a new contract after the board see him as one of the Barcelona ‘promising’ players of the near future.

AC Milan and Chelsea were the only two clubs ever firmly interested in the left back but he has decided to stay and sign a new contract next Thursday until 2026.

The rumours only started because Balde was not invited to pre-season with the first team however this was soon fixed after he and his agent voiced their displeasure. Consequently, this means our pursuit of this Barcelona prospect is over.

Written by Frankie

Giroud: Farewell to a Legend

When Olivier Giroud inevitably calls time on his glorious three-and-a-half-year spell at Chelsea this summer, he will do so as a club legend. Having signed in January 2018 as part of the bizarre three-way striker swap that saw Arsenal break the bank for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Borussia Dortmund compensated with the loan signing of Michy Batshuayi, Giroud had to win over a sceptical fanbase. It was a move that did little to inspire Chelsea fans, who were beginning to worry about a lack of end-product from big money summer signing Alvaro Morata, whom after a red-hot start had netted just once in his last 6 appearances before Giroud had arrived and succumbed to two different injuries. His Arsenal connection and age (he was already 31) did nothing to ease doubts. However, the Frenchman went on to become the Blues’ top scorer in successful Champions League and Europa League campaigns in 2020/21 and 2018/19 respectively, as well as being a crucial component to the sides’ 2018 FA Cup win and strong finish to the 2019/20 season post-lockdown. Scorer of goals you and I could only dream of bagging, a dedicated servant who stayed even when more gametime was available elsewhere, we should always remain indebted to one of the league’s most underrated strikers.

A beautiful photo for all Chelsea fans: Giroud has passed on his experience to the youngsters. Photo credit: A Stamford Bridge Too Far

Looking at Giroud’s Chelsea career from the viewpoint of cold, hard numbers, the Frenchman netted 17 times from just 33 starts in the league (one every 187 minutes) and an astonishing 17 goals from only 15 starts in Europe – an absurd record of a goal every 86 minutes! –  for the Blues. His sensational European goalscoring record actually makes him the club’s third top scorer in continental competitions of all time behind only the mythical duo of Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard. However, there is so much more to Giroud and his legend than just goalscoring figures and there are many more reasons that he will stay in the hearts and minds of Chelsea fans for a very long time.

Giroud has now won more-or-less everything there is to win: a World Cup with France, the continental club double and a domestic cup with Chelsea as well as one of the most unexpected Ligue 1 triumphs ever with Montpellier which prompted his move to Arsenal in 2012. As well as being a prolific winner he has also made a name for himself as the man who scores crucial goals for his side (very much in the ilk of Drogba). The Frenchman has netted in a Europa league final, secured the Blue’s a place in the FA Cup final in 2018 with his incredible dribble and poked finish against Southampton and bagged an incredible bicycle kick to break the deadlock in a tight last-16 away leg against Atletico Madrid this season. The period that will surely pop to mind when Chelsea fans reminisce about the bearded genius is his remarkable form post-lockdown last season which lead to Chelsea securing Champions League football this year (and we all know how that turned out!). He scored 6 goals in 8 starts post-lockdown, with the Blues losing feebly against West Ham and Sheffield United on the only occasions that he did not begin the game on the field.

Giroud’s stunning bicycle kick against Atletico Madrid will long live in the memory of Chelsea fans. Photo credit: ESPN

Stop-start would be a good way to describe Giroud’s time in West London. The Frenchman has often been left on the bench behind Tammy Abraham or sometime even left out of the squad entirely due to the presence of Michy Batshuayi and yet when called upon he has always delivered. To keep that match sharpness and concentration despite missing months of football at a time is an incredible asset that Giroud has honed (beginning with his time at the Emirates) but even more impressive still is his temperament. There are not many World Cup winners who would take being deputy to a 22-year-old with limited game time well (let alone when they are the second top scorer ever for the French national team) but that is exactly what Giroud did. Instead of causing drama and angling for a move away to a club where he would get more gametime and earn a last big contract, Giroud stayed and helped the youngsters – including his direct competition in Tammy Abraham – in training, with his wealth of experience. Despite dragging Chelsea to a top 4 finish last season Giroud returned to the familiar surroundings of the bench at the start of this campaign as Timo Werner became additional competition for a starting berth up front. However, Giroud did what he does best, waiting patiently for his opportunity to shine, and when it came he took it: 4 goals in a single game against Sevilla, the winner in a crunch tie with Rennes and the aforementioned stunning bicycle kick in Bucharest.

The bearded Frenchman was the Blues top scorer as they clinched a historic second European Cup. Photo credit: We Ain’t Got No History

The Frenchman will leave a cult hero thanks to the many crucial moments he has starred in as well as the memories he has provided. Who could forget the famous ‘thankyou Arsenal’ message on an Instagram livestream after he netted the opener against his former club in the Europa League final? There is nothing better than beating your rivals in a cup final with a goal from their former striker! Then there are the poetic finishes: the rifled shot against Spurs, the turn and finish against Villa and the dink against Sevilla. And that bicycle kick – who could forget that bicycle kick? If you ever get a free 10 minutes, do yourself a favour and watch a compilation of the Frenchman’s best moments: he really is a beautiful footballer (and man!) and he will be sorely missed.

To Olivier Giroud: thank you for everything and we wish you the best of luck in Italy, fans of Milan are in for a treat!

Written by Daniel New

Podcast: Episode 50 – Special Announcements!

We’re moving to Youtube!

In our fiftieth episode of The Chelsea Spot Podcast (FIFTY!), Orlando (Host – @0rland1nho) and Paree (@CFCParee) had a much more relaxed chat where we discussed two new projects – Youtube and FanHub! We also talked about Chelsea U18s’ 8-1 thrashing against Barnsley, the Giroud masterclass against Sevilla, whether he should start against Leeds and the return of the fans, and finally discuss which young lads could play against Krasnador next week as we have topped the group!

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Podcast: Chelsea 2-0 Wolves Review, Havertz, Willian new contract & more!


In our twenty first episode of The Chelsea Spot podcast Orlando (Host – @0rland1nho), Danny (@danny_new_) & Paree (@ACParee) discuss the great 2-0 victory over Wolves to qualify Chelsea for the Champions League next season. The boys also discuss the developments in Kai Havertz to Chelsea, the breakthrough in Willian signing a new contract and a lot more!

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Podcast: Chelsea 3-1 Man U Review & Liverpool Preview!

What a victory!

In our twenty first episode of The Chelsea Spot podcast Orlando (Host – @0rland1nho), Danny (@danny_new_) & Paree (@ACParee) discuss the incredible 3-1 victory over Manchester United in the FA Cup Semi-Final, and also look forward to Wednesday’s game against Liverpool which could secure us a Champions League spot for next season.

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Ranking Chelsea’s 20/21 squad from ‘Star Player’ to ‘Must Be Sold!’

Chelsea have already confirmed the signings of Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech and are expected to have a busy transfer window with the club looking to offload a number of squad players.

But where do the new signings rank amongst the squad? Who should be starting every week? Who needs to be sold?

Well, here’s my rankings from “Star player” down to “Must be sold”

Tier List made via tiermaker.com

As you can see, the list is quite ‘bottom heavy’ with a large number of players thrown into the must be sold category. The likes of Bakayoko, Batshuayi and Pedro feature as they look destined to be moved on by the club and I doubt many Chelsea fans would disagree. There are, however, some admittedly controversial picks in this tier.

Jorginho is a player who has drastically divided the fanbase ever since he signed for the club in 2018. Since the restart, Jorginho has been out-of-favour and Chelsea managed to win four out of the five league games in which the Italian midfielder didn’t start, scoring an impressive 12 goals in the process. Due to injuries to both N’Golo Kanté and Billy Gilmour, Lampard was forced to hand Jorginho his first start against Sheffield United and The Blues were thumped 3-0 with many describing the performance as the “worst of the season” and Jorginho faced the brunt of the criticism due to a lacklustre display. Despite beating Norwich 1-0, Chelsea put in another fairly disappointing display which lacked urgency, tempo and attacking quality. Yet again, Jorginho started this game and for me, he’s a big part of the problem.

I personally don’t dislike Antonio Rudiger as much as most Chelsea fans seem to. I think he does offer some leadership and certainly has a physical presence which most of his peers lack, however if I’m being completely honest (and harsh) he simply cannot defend.

Image Source: Chelsea-News.co
He’s a central defender… who can’t defend!

So, not only do I think Rudiger should be moved on but I also believe his calamitous partner Andreas Christensen has had more than enough chances at the club. These two are an actual comedy spectacle when they line up next to each other and while Andreas is still young and could improve, I just don’t think he’s suited to be a Premier League centre-half. Although he’s welcome to prove me wrong!

Finally from the bottom tier, Kepa has to be sold. I’ve never witnessed a goalkeeper at the top level struggle to stop shots so badly. The club are reportedly interested in Jan Oblak and Andre Onana, both of whom would massively improve our squad, so Arrizabalaga has to go.

Just as a caveat, Willian has been included in the ‘must be sold’ category solely based on his contract situation, otherwise I’d be happy for him to stick around for a year as a squad player.

The boys in the ‘loan’ list are fairly self explanatory. The teenage lads from the academy could do with a season on loan in the Championship or even League 1 to get acclimated with senior football. I’ve chucked Kenedy in there too just because I think he’s hugely underrated so I’d like the club to keep him on the books, but it looks likely that he’ll be leaving on a permanent basis.

Image Source: Sportskeeda

The squad players section was fairly easy for me. Not all 23 first-teamers can be ‘world class’ (unless you’re Manchester City) so we need a solid bench consisting of players who can come into the squad when needed and make an impact. Players who “offer something different” are key throughout a squad and the likes of Olivier Giroud, Ross Barkley and Marcos Alonso all tick that box. Giroud has proven his value since the restart and is still a goal threat, while Barkley has actually impressed at times throughout the season and by all accounts works extremely hard to improve himself. The reason I’d keep Alonso around is because he gives us the option to switch to a three-at-the-back system whereas Emerson, for me, just offers very little.

There’s absolutely no reason why both Billy Gilmour and Tammy Abraham cannot be starters next season. They both have the quality as they have proven already, but due the signing of Timo Werner and Lampard moving Kanté into a deeper role, I think that they may not be nailed on to start week-in week-out next year but both will certainly play a crucial role in the long-term.

The regular starters that I’ve selected are a perfect blend of youth and experience in my opinion. Azpilicueta has proven to still be a quality captain and player throughout the season and I believe that Frank Lampard is a big fan of the spaniard, Reece James is also battling for the same position though and deserves to be a starter so we may see ‘Dave’ continue to feature as a left-back. However, if we do sign Tagliafico, Telles, Chilwell or whoever it may be then that could knock one of Azpilicueta or James down a tier.

It’s pretty much impossible to fit all of Kovacic, Mount and Loftus-Cheek into one starting eleven but all three players offer different skill sets which are incredibly valuable to this Chelsea side. Mason Mount has been the club’s player of the season for me, his quality both on and off the ball is outstanding and to have contributed so much in his debut Premier League season is hugely impressive. He’s absolutely key to Frank’s system and therefore should and will start the majority of games next season wether we sign Havertz or not.

Image Source: 90min

I honestly believe that a fully fit Ruben Loftus-Cheek is one of the best players in the Premier League. He’s the definition of ‘complete midfielder’ and can offer both a goal threat and be a creative outlet. His physical strength combined with immense technical ability when in full flight makes him a defender’s nightmare and if he can get back to his best next season then he has to be a starter.

Fikayo Tomori and Callum Hudson-Odoi have both suffered injury problems as of late but are two of England’s brightest talents. Zouma and Tomori’s partnership in the first half of the season was far from perfect but was certainly the most encouraging central defensive set-up we’ve seen. Chelsea fans rightly love Hudson-Odoi and despite all of his off-the-pitch issues this season he has the quality to set the standard for young Premier League players next season.

Werner, Ziyech, Pulisic, Kantè. Is that the best “big four” since the Warriors lined up with Curry, Thompson, Draymond and KD?

Edit by @AAZChelsea

Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech are nailed on to be top, top players next season for Chelsea. They’re two of the most dynamic and exciting players in the Premier League and will improve Chelsea’s already strong attack ten-fold. Christian Pulisic’s form since the restart has all Blues fans convinced that he’s the real deal, adding goals to his game and beginning to remind fans of a certain Eden Hazard due to his immense dribbling ability. N’Golo Kanté’s inclusion as a star player needs no justification, despite injury issues this year he’s clearly a world class player who would start for any and every team in Europe.

So, that’s my personal ranking of next season’s Chelsea squad. Do you agree? Disagree? Let us know @TheChelseaSpot

*I (stupidly) forgot to include Ethan Ampadu in this tier list. Personally I’d like to see him as a squad player next season but he could benefit from another loan.

Why Olivier Giroud will be crucial in the run-in and beyond

With a pirouette and a sweep of his right boot, Olivier Giroud once again proved to Frank Lampard how vital a role he will play in the remainder of this campaign, and potentially next season as well. His sweetly struck winner against Aston Villa on Sunday was his 3rd goal in 6 Premier League starts this season, and demonstrated his ability to find the net when Chelsea need him the most. With Chelsea embarking on a run of 9 league games in just 35 days following the season’s resumption, the Frenchman can expect plenty more game time, and Chelsea fans can expect plenty more high-quality showings from the World Cup winner.

Giroud has stepped up when needed by Chelsea yet again last weekend, striking a crucial winner against Aston Villa. Photo credit: The Guardian

Entering the season there was uncertainty over who would start in the centre forward berth for Chelsea. Young Tammy Abraham, however, made the role his own, with an impressive run of 7 league goals in 3 appearances before the September international break, leaving Olivier Giroud in the cold. A remarkable run of 10 consecutive games without being included in the match day squad either side of the turn of the year illustrated how out of favour the 33 year old was in Lampard’s plans. Below the struggling Michy Batshuayi in the pecking order, and with noise growing about a rumoured move to Serie A in January, how has Giroud so rapidly made himself almost indispensable to the club?

After scoring in Chelsea’s routine 3-0 win over Burnley in January, the strain of carrying Chelsea’s attack in his debut season seemed to catch up with Abraham. Up until then there had been occasional knocks, with Batshuayi deputising in his place, until Tammy was left out of the match day squad for the game against Manchester United in February. Batshuayi missed two gilt-edged chances, leading to him passing up the starting centre forward role to Giroud, and the Frenchman has started all 4 league games since, scoring an impressive 3 times and cementing himself in Lampard’s plans.

Even after such fine form it was a surprise to many that Giroud started ahead of his young English teammate against Aston Villa. The Frenchman presumably was chosen for his ability with his back to goal, an area he is arguably the best in the world in, as Villa’s extremely low block would require an awful lot of linkup play to unpick. Giroud duly obliged, putting in a vintage display. He managed to win 5 aerial duels as he successfully fought off the huge centre back pairing of Kortney Hause and Tyrone Mings. He also won 3 fouls, proving how much of a handful he can be to opposition defences. His sharp touches and intricate passes were evident throughout, most noticeably when he played a key part in the build up to his goal: exchanging a nice one-two with Mount on the edge of Villa’s area before cleverly pulling back from marker Hourihane, receiving the ball from Azpilicueta, turning, and firing in via a slight deflection. 

Not only will Giroud be useful for sharing minutes with Abraham as the games come thick and fast, he could also be selected ahead of his teammate against the low block defences Chelsea often face. With three games against bottom-half opposition, Giroud could prove to be the key to unlocking stingy defences. As mentioned, his hold up play is outstanding, and he averages 3.1 aerial duels won per game, slightly better than Abraham’s 3, which could help when Chelsea need someone to take down quick cross-field balls as they look to create an over-load down one flank. His now legendary flicks and tricks could also be vital when providing the killer touch to undo a congested defensive line, something Tammy has struggled with at times this season.

Abraham and Giroud could share minutes with fixtures coming thick and fast, photo credit: We Ain’t Got No History

Marina Granovskaia – a Chelsea director and Abramovich’s number 2 – moved quickly this summer to secure Giroud to a one-year contract extension. Although many saw this as a safety net for both player and club given the uncertain market in the wake of the global pandemic, it could prove to be a wise move on the pitch too. With Werner arriving at Stamford Bridge next season, he will join Abraham and Giroud as extremely capable number 9s battling for game time. However, at RB Leipzig Werner has been played in a two man strike partnership in 26 of his 33 Bundesliga appearances this season , often paired with the 6 foot 3 inch tall Yussuf Poulsen. The big Danish striker is essentially a more limited version of Giroud, played to win aerial duels and to facilitate Werner’s darting runs from the left. Either Giroud or Abraham could play in a centre forward duo with the German, or as a number 9 with Werner cutting in from the left wing next season, in which case Giroud could be essential if Abraham is injured or lacking form. Even though the Frenchman turns 34 in September, it is clear to see how important he is to this Chelsea squad, especially if they go deep in numerous competitions next term.

Not only has he impressed on the pitch, Giroud has also displayed an extraordinary mentality this year. When faced with transfer speculation in the January window, he didn’t force his way out of the club or hand in a transfer request, and when he didn’t get a move away he didn’t complain. Instead, being the model professional he is, he got his head down and worked hard to show Lampard what he was missing. Ultimately his goals have been worth 4 points since then (with vital strikes in 2-1 wins over Spurs and Villa) and by the end of the season that could prove to be the difference between making and missing out on a lucrative Champions League spot. His mentality and pedigree is so inspirational that it is worth having him around, not only to play, but also to pass on his experience to our current crop of youngsters so they can learn from one of the most accomplished players in the league.

With Champions League qualification on the line in a frantic run-in, Giroud could play a vital role in securing Chelsea a spot in next season’s elite European competition. He could also stick around next season and help the transition of Lampard’s young squad from also-rans to title challengers. Not bad for someone who seemed finished at Chelsea earlier this year! We should all be grateful for the Frenchman’s service, and appreciate him for staying put in difficult circumstances. Hopefully he hangs around for a little longer.

Written by Daniel New

Chelsea 2-1 Aston Villa: The Blues complete quickfire comback

After being 1-0 down at Half-Time, Chelsea fought back in the second half with two quick goals to gain three points.

Chelsea’s first game since the halt in the season was against Aston Villa, and the other results in the Premier League gave us a huge chance to increase the gap. Arsenal and Sheffield United lost, while Manchester United and Spurs drew against each other, with Leicester City also only picking up one point.

Chelsea’s fixture list certainly is not the nicest, with the Blues still having to play the likes of Liverpool, Wolves and Sheffield, meaning that we had to take all three points today.


At 3.15pm the lineup was announced, and there certainly were mixed reactions all over social media. Fans were absolutely delighted to see Loftus-Cheek start in what was his first game in over a year, yet the sighting of Pulisic, Giroud, Gilmour and James certainly surprised many supporters.

We also had been hearing that Lampard was trying a new tactic with the 4-3-3 with N’Golo Kante as the holding midfielder, and today’s lineup certainly suggested he would be the deepest of all three, with Mateo Kovacic and Mason Mount either side of him.

The first half begun, with everyone in the stadium taking a knee down as part of the #BlackLivesMatter movement in the Premier League. As expected, Chelsea dominated the ball and at a point had 77% possession, but were still unable to put the ball in the back of the net after Aston Villa defended incredibly deep as a block.

Chances were being created, with Mount striking a ball brilliantly from the edge of the box with his left foot forcing a great save, as well as putting in an outstanding ball after a beautiful skill which on another day Loftus-Cheek would have scored. Crosses were being spammed into the box by Willian and Azpilicueta in the first half, but the forwards couldn’t get their toes on it or they ended up in Row Z.

Kante was enjoying himself in the new tactic, pinging the ball left right and centre, while Kovacic wasn’t able to get that involved in the game. Here’s where the statement ‘typical Chelsea’ comes in play.

Just before half-time, one set piece for Aston Villa, they cross it in, goal. Kepa made a solid save, but was left picking the ball up from the back of the net after there was not a single Chelsea player to react from the initial save, while Hause was left with a simple tap-in. The whole mood was destroyed and the Blues’ domination came to a waste, however even at half-time, there was always that hope that Chelsea could get back into the game, something which we rarely see.


Chelsea came out in the second half, with no changes, with some even questioning the in game management. Lampard gave another 10 minutes to Loftus-Cheek and Kovacic, yet both were unable to make any difference in the beginning of the second 45 minutes and were swiftly brought off for Pulisic and Barkley respectfully.

Loftus-Cheek was always going to have a rough game, and Lampard has said this game was more about his ‘physicality.’ Getting 55 minutes without any problems or injuries is definitely one of the huge positives from today. Kovacic wasn’t able to show enough quality which we know he has, and has always struggled playing in the box to box role next to Kante, which is something which perhaps could be looked into later.

The two substitutions changed the game. They brought a bit of flair, pace and movement, which completely threw off the structured Aston Villa team. 5 minutes later, Pulisic scored with his left foot on the half volley after a wonderful cross from Azpilicueta, and from then on the game really was in Chelsea’s hand.


Two minutes after our first goal, the ball fell nicely to Giroud who turned and shot with his weak foot, with it ending up in the back of the net via a deflection. From that moment on, Chelsea just had to make sure to defend their lead and always looked comfortable.

Chelsea were back to controlling the ball, and there were a few heart attacks on the way with Rudiger and Christensen having huge lapses of concentration, but Villa were never really a threat in front of goal otherwise. A few mistakes from Reece James almost cost us in the end, but the ball was cleared and the ref blew his final whistle.

Like everyone said before, it doesn’t matter how Chelsea were going to get the three points, it just mattered that we did. And Lampard’s squad delivered.

Kepa showed glimpses of the 72 million value, Azpilicueta got two assists while Alonso disappointed, Christensen looked solid in the first half but then followed Rudiger in having idiotic moments.

Kante’s new role certainly impressed many fans, with Mount being my own Man of the Match after some incredible pressing and work in the #8 role.

Willian also showed a few bright moments, Loftus-Cheek gained fitness, Giroud scored a goal and the American impressed once again from the bench. Lampard’s in game management is not to be missed either, who got the second half spot on.

Who was your Man of the Match? Let us know on our social media platforms.

Written by Paree