Chelsea Set To Allow Four Players Leave The Club This Winter
Chelsea are set to make a final decision on whether or not a host of their fringe players can leave the club, on loan or permanently, after Saturday’s FA Cup tie against Brentford.
Goalkeeper Asmir Begovic, striker Michy Batshuayi and midfielders Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Charly Musonda are all waiting to hear definitively whether or not Chelsea will allow them out before the transfer window shuts next week.
Begovic’s situation could develop more quickly if Chelsea secure an attractive replacement for him before the weekend, but the Bosnia international is currently preparing to face Brentford.
Head coach Antonio Conte would ideally like to keep Begovic, Batshuayi and Loftus-Cheek at the club for the remainder of the season, but he also realises the trio are keen to play more regular first-team football.
Begovic is the subject of a permanent bid from Bournemouth, while Batshuayi, Loftus-Cheek and Musonda are loan targets for a host of clubs should they be made available.
Unless incoming deals are done beforehand, Conte is planning to use Saturday’s FA Cup fourth-round tie to hand rare starts to Begovic, Batshuayi and Loftus-Cheek, who all played in the third round victory over Peterborough United.
Although Chelsea already have an idea of what they will do, final decisions on their fringe players can be taken once the FA Cup tie is out of the way and when they know for certain whether or not they have progressed.
Conte has spoken positively about Begovic and Loftus-Cheek in recent weeks, but both men know they will be in line for very few starts if they stay at Chelsea past January.
Chelsea will only accept a Bournemouth offer for Begovic if they first sign a replacement to act as understudy to Thibaut Courtois in the Premier League.
Attractive options are thin on the ground, although the Blues are believed to have drawn up a shortlist of potential candidates to replace Begovic with talks ongoing.
Conte and Chelsea want Batshuayi to see out his first season in English football at the club and the only chance of him going out on loan is if Chelsea sign a new forward. Swansea City’s Fernando Llorente is one man under consideration.
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