Report: Chelsea to decide whether they will recall one of two loanees in January
Chelsea could decide to recall one of their on-loan left-backs in January as Ben Chilwell is expected to be out for the rest of the season after needing surgery to repair the anterior cruciate ligament tear, according to The Telegraph.
After initially delaying the decision on whether Chilwell would have to undergo surgery, the Blues have now made the decision that the defender will have to go under the knife.
The Telegraph claims that there is a fear that he may not be ready to play again before August.
Now Chelsea and Tuchel will have to make a decision.
As it stands, Marcos Alonso is the only natural left-back in the squad.
Tuchel has tried to deploy Saul Niguez, Reece James, and Callum Hudson-Odoi in the position, but it seems logical that he would want a better option for the remainder of the season.
According to The Telegraph, an option that Chelsea could go for, before looking at potential targets in the transfer market, is to recall either Emerson Palmieri or Ian Maatsen from Lyon and Coventry City, respectively.
Last month, The Telegraph journalist Matt Law also claimed that the option to bring back Maatsen had already been discussed by the club before the decision on Chilwell’s surgery was even made.
Emerson is clearly the more experienced option of the two, but Maatsen is already quite familiar with playing as a left wing-back in a back three system at Coventry.
Although, unlike Alonso and Emerson, Maatsen is arguably better at defending than he is going forward, and Tuchel expects his wing-backs to be involved a lot in the final third.
However, if Chelsea are to turn their attention to the transfer market, the report added, Barcelona’s Sergio Dest and Everton’s Lucas Digne could be potential targets. The respective club is also expected to allow both players to leave in January.