Report: 23-year-old Chelsea prospect may be given big promotion by Tuchel next season, he's yet to make debut
It is being reported 23-year-old goalkeeper Nathan Baxter could be promoted to the first team squad this summer.
The Athletic suggest the Englishman could solve Chelsea’s conundrum when it comes to a number two for next season, with a potential exit for Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Baxter, who is yet to make his debut for the Blues, has been on the move constantly since breaking through the Chelsea academy, enduring seven loan spells ranging from non-league clubs all the way to the Championship.
The youngster made an impact last season, as he impressed when given opportunities for Hull City in the Championship.
He kept seven clean sheets in just 16 league appearances, having the highest save percentage in England’s entire second division.
The breakthrough has not gone unnoticed at Stamford Bridge, with the Athletic suggesting he could well take Chelsea’s number two spot.
There are claims that Baxter could immediately jump ahead of Marcus Bettinelli in the pecking order at Stamford Bridge, if Kepa does leave.
The news comes as rumours of the Spanish goalkeeper’s departure from the club continue to swirl, with interest reported from home and abroad.
The leading suitors appear to be Lazio in Italy, where a reunion with Maurizio Sarri could see him return to the form he showed in his first season at Stamford Bridge.
The permanent stay of Baxter is likely not going to cause Edouard Mendy too much concern, as the Senegalese star looks to continue his rapid growth towards becoming one of the best goalkeepers in the world.
But it would still represent a real show of faith from Tuchel in the goalkeeper, who is yet to make a first-team appearance for the Blues after coming through their academy.
A number two goalkeeper is not an area Chelsea should consider a high priority to address in this transfer window, so looking closer to home would seem the far more viable asset.
Baxter impressed greatly in his time in the Championship last season, and is certainly capable of challenging a few number ones in the Premier League, so his presence deputising to Mendy would be useful.
Last season, the bond between Mendy and Kepa was obvious and looked to improve the pair as they battled for the shirt, so the club will be hoping the same happens if the Englishman stays this summer.