Report: Three Chelsea players leave first-team group amid US pre-season tour
Three Chelsea youngsters have reportedly left Thomas Tuchel’s first-team group during their pre-season tour in the United States.
Following the late arrivals of Armando Broja, Raheem Sterling, Kalidou Koulibaly, Tuchel now oversees a 32-man group in pre-season.
The manager admitted that some of these players had to miss out on their first pre-season game against Club America since he couldn’t field them all.
“I was a bit sad today because some youngsters had to be outside due to injury or simply the fact we had too many players for two teams,” Tuchel explained after the weekend’s 2-1 win (via the club’s official website).
“Some other players deserved to play, like for example Harvey Vale who had a fantastic tournament for England Under-19s and did very well in training.”
This is far from ideal, obviously, and, Football London reporter Adam Newson has claimed that Vale is among the three Chelsea players who have left the group.
“Billy Gilmour and Harvey Vale have left the Chelsea first-team group and are potentially joining up with the development squad out here in the United States,” Newson wrote on Twitter.
“Armando Broja, meanwhile, is on his way back to England tonight. [Several] clubs are still pushing to sign him.”
Chelsea development squad are currently also in the United States for the inaugural MLS Next Pro invitational and will play three games this week.
The reported decision to send Gilmour to join the Under-23s is quite a surprise since just a year ago, the midfielder seemed very close to becoming an established first-team player at Stamford Bridge.
In Broja’s case, Fabrizio Romano claims that it may have to do with his a potential transfer move to London rivals West Ham.
“West Ham are really close to reaching an agreement with Broja on personal terms, talks ongoing with Chelsea,” the Italian transfer expert explained on Twitter.
“Broja will clarify his future very soon.”