Chelsea drop 26-year-old midfielder from their Champions League squad list, £6m man replaces him

Chelsea have made one change to their Champions League squad list ahead of their game against Lille later this month.

UEFA recently confirmed the alteration on their website, with Kenedy taking the place of Lewis Baker.

Bye bye, Baker

Baker was originally part of Thomas Tuchel’s European cohort, yet never even made it onto the bench for any of the team’s group stage games.  

Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

In fact, the 26-year-old only made one appearance for the Blues before joining Stoke City on a free transfer last month.

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He played just over half an hour in the FA Cup victory over Chesterfield at the beginning of January.

Incredibly, that was the midfielder’s first senior minutes for Chelsea since his debut, way back in 2014.

After that three-minute cameo away to Derby County, Baker went on eight different loan spells whilst still owned by the Premier League side.

His journey took him to four separate countries before eventually being released to the Potters permanently.

Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images

Kenedy on call

With a hole in the side to fill, Chelsea decided to recall Kenedy early from his loan with Flamengo.

Many saw this as a response to the wing-back situation staring Tuchel in the face.

Following the campaign-ending injury to Ben Chilwell, the only recognised player to field at left wing-back was Marcos Alonso.

With the club still fighting on five different fronts, including the Club World Cup, the aging Spaniard required cover.

Kenedy hasn’t featured yet since returning to Cobham, but could well get an opportunity tomorrow against Al Hilal.

Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Other than the odd FA Cup tie, there probably won’t be a better time for the £6m (Express) Brazilian to prove his abilities.

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.