With a smart move, the Blues can profit from Southampton’s difficulties.
Southampton is a target this summer since their better players are stuck in transfer limbo. While fresher kids will also be on the list as inexpensive deals, stars like Romeo Lavia, Kyle Walker-Peters, and James Ward-Prowse are all set to draw high-level suitors.
After their relegation from the Premier League was confirmed, other teams will be scouting around to find a deal at a discount because they, like Chelsea, are looking for a midfielder of Lavia’s caliber, experience, and skill. Another person who might spark curiosity is Armel Bella-Kotchap, who arrived in England with big expectations.
The Blues may be looking elsewhere as well, but they do have the benefit of acquiring former recruitment director Joe Shields from the south coast club. Walker-Peters has become a previous alternative, even though Ward-Prowse and Lavia are the apparent teams.
Although Lavia has a release clause that will enable Manchester City to re-sign him in 2024, rivals may still be aggressively after him this summer. Walker-Peters, a fellow Englishman, was considered by the squad as Reece James’ backup last summer when Cesar Azpilicueta was on the verge of leaving.
Chelsea now has more options in defense going into the next transfer window after signing Malo Gusto, but doubts about the position remain due to James’ and Malo Gusto’s injury histories.
Walker-Peters is no longer one of the players being sought, but Mauricio Pochettino and the Blues might still acquire a guaranteed player if they so want. Re-signing previous academy standout Tino Livramento was one of the choices going into 2023, and while it was risky, it might turn out to be a route worth going down again.
His £38 million buy-back clause might be taken into account if James and Gusto’s fitness issues don’t get better before the start of the new season. His early promise at Premier League level had reportedly caught Manchester United’s attention before his season-ending cruciate ligament injury last year.
He is only 20 years old and still a talent with great potential despite missing virtually the whole current season. In his little time with Southampton, he had already demonstrated that the $5 million that had been paid for him was a steal and that there was much to be thrilled about.
He joined the club’s youth teams again in April, and if he decides to leave in the following transfer windows, Chelsea will have first dibs. After demonstrating his abilities above the Championship level, it is conceivable that he would quickly go back up to another team in the division.
With game time, opportunity, and physical growth all factors to consider, it would be risky on the part of Chelsea and Livramento, but if the Blues want to recruit someone who has shown flashes of being similar to Gareth Bale, the price tag and option are unquestionably not too high.
Theo Walcott remarked to the England young prodigy, “Do you know what.” In a recent interview, Walcott observed, “He reminds me a little bit of Gareth [Bale] when he came through as a full-back.”
Of course, to compare him to someone like that is a bold statement. But I can’t help but believe that you know what he’s going to do because of his presence, the way he drives, the speed, and the strength.