Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele is available for free in the summer as he is yet to sign an extension. The winger’s contract is up by the summer, and despite all the drama, no agreement has been reached between him and the club. Moreover, rumors flew in January that Dembele’s agent has held talks with several clubs over a potential move. Elite clubs in Chelsea, Manchester United, and PSG were all linked with a move for Dembele. However, Chelsea are reportedly leading the race to land the 25-year-old in the summer. Thomas Tuchel will begin discussions over transfer plans with new Chelsea owners, and Dembele is on the agenda.
Tuchel has formerly coached Dembele when both were at Borussia Dortmund. Rather it would be safe to say that Tuchel brought the best out of Dembele, and molded him into the player he is today. As a result, Tuchel knows the winger in and out and wants to add him to his Chelsea squad. However, Chelsea can only make a move for Dembele when the sanctions imposed on them are lifted by the government.
On the other hand, Dembele’s potential move to the Londoners would further beef-up Tuchel’s attacking options. But his signing would come with some repercussions, forcing some of the Chelsea players to consider their future. We take a look at three particular names who could face adverse effects of Dembele’s incoming.
Dembele to Chelsea could spell the end of the academy boy
Callum Hudson-Odoi has experienced quite a highs and lows in his Chelsea career. The academy graduate of the Blues made his first-team debut at 17-years-old and has since cemented his place in the first team. Further on, his talent has blossomed wonderfully at the club, but chances have been limited for the 21-year-old. Neither Tuchel has trusted the youngster with regular minutes so far in his regime. Though Hudson-Odoi has 28 games under his belt this season, only 6 of them have been full 90 minutes. However, an Achilles injury has also hampered his season, forcing him to sit out for more than 2 months now.
Dembele making his way into the Chelsea squad would definitely see Hudson-Odoi being snatched off the mere minutes he is getting now. Currently, Dembele is way ahead in terms of form as compared to Hudson-Odoi. The Frenchman has 13 assists and 2 goals in 31 games, despite missing many due to injuries. As a result, the youngster who at 21 has a lot of potentials and could seek an exit.
But that would not be the first time Hudson-Odoi will be wanting to exit the club. Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich came calling 18 months ago for Hudson-Odoi, but the winger rejected their offer. But Dembele’s addition could force Hudson-Odoi to consider the offers which may line up for him.
Tuchel would have to lose another Dortmund associate in order to welcome one
Christian Pulisic would be another player who could find it difficult at Chelsea if Dembele arrives. Like the Frenchman, Pulisic has also formerly worked with Tuchel at Borussia Dortmund. But the picture has been somewhat different at Chelsea for Pulisic who was signed in the January of 2019 for £57 million.
Tuchel seems to have lost his trust in his former associate, often leaving him on the bench. Moreover, Pulisic has every reason for frustration as he has proved his worth whenever given the opportunity.
Furthermore, Dembele’s signing won’t be a move that will be anticipated by the American. Pulisic has already endured a torrid period under Thomas Tuchel. When Chelsea appointed Tuchel, everybody thought Pulisic was the highest benefiter. However, the change of guard from Lampard to Tuchel has only dented Pulisic’s development. The 23-year-old was slowly turning into a central figure under Lampard, only for Tuchel to regularly bench him. Pulisic could also seek a transfer if come summer Dembele is moving to Chelsea.
£40 million star could be on the move as well
Hakim Ziyech is the third player who could leave the Blues. Huge things were expected from Ziyech when he arrived at Stamford Bridge. The winger had shone brightly at Ajax, scoring 49 times and providing a whopping 81 assists in 165 games. However, Ziyech is yet to work his magic for Chelsea and justify the £40 million the club paid for him.
Dembele’s arrival could be viewed as an upgrade on Ziyech, forcing him towards a summer exit. Tuchel won’t want to rely on a player who has only shown glimpses of his talent and would rather have Dembele as Chelsea look to fight for the title next season.
Further on, Ziyech would still attract offers from several clubs as his talent is not unknown. Chelsea will hence look to cash in on the former Ajax player in the summer. Also, the club is staring at a busy summer transfer window under new owners and Ziyech’s sale would add more funds. But surely, it would be a concern to Hakim Ziyech if Dembele comes. The 29-year-old is already behind in the pecking order of attacking options, and Dembele would only further add to his competition. However, it all depends on whether Chelsea decides to go for Dembele or not.
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