Now that Kalidou Koulibaly and Raheem Sterling are on their way to Merseyside, Chelsea and Thomas Tuchel have a few important decisions to make. The Blues finally have options to consider, and the fight for coveted caps is far from over.
Conor Gallagher and Jorginho are among those eyeing regular time on the pitch, and online sportsbook odds are reflecting the inner turmoil that management must be going through. But what do Gallagher and Jorginho bring to the table? Do they have what it takes to be starting players, or is the squad becoming too big for its own good?
If the last friendly against Club America was any indication of their performance, both players are capable of fulfilling their roles effectively. However, an own goal by Reece James and a few unforced errors showed that Chelsea’s lineup still needs a fair bit of work, and the start of the season is right around the corner.
Todd Boehly and Thomas Tuchel don’t have a lot of time on their hands, and ponderous deliberation is a luxury that management can’t afford. Gallagher and Jorginho could add some much-needed stability as we head into the new season.
The trouble is, that Jorginho’s contract is about to expire, and Gallagher’s age could lead to older, more experienced players getting the first pick. Let’s take a closer look at each player individually and see if we can discover the context behind this nuanced situation.
Jorginho’s contract woes
With only a few months left on his contract, Jorginho could be moving back to Italy as early as next year. His agent has made it clear that the opportunity to return to his home country is always on the cards, which leaves Boehly and Tuchel with a crucial decision to make.
N’golo Kante’s contract is also set to expire in 2023, but the French player has been linked with at least two English clubs; Arsenal and Manchester United. That isn’t the case for Jorginho, which could be due to the fact that replacing him in time for the start of the season can lead to far more trouble than it’s worth.
Over the last few years, Jorginho has been integral to many of Chelsea’s most notable performances. He was instrumental in the signing of Koulibaly, and Blues fans have already declared that the pair’s friendship is a sign of bright times ahead. If they let go of Jorginho, it could form a rift between fans and management, which is the last thing Chelsea needs.
Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen have moved on to other teams, and losing Jorginho as well has the potential to be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. Contractual chaos has been one of the defining characteristics of Boehly’s first few months in charge, and a repeat situation is something that all parties will want to avoid.
Jorginho’s style of play isn’t exactly traditional. However, that could be exactly what Chelsea needs to put itself ahead of the competition. Fans have made it clear that they want him to stay at the club for the foreseeable future, but the decision ultimately lies in the hands of Boehly and the rest of the management.
Gallagher’s home and away history
Since August 2019, Conor Gallagher has been loaned out to four EPL sides: Charlton Athletic, Swansea City, West Bromwich Albion, and Crystal Palace. During that time, the English midfielder proved that he’s more than capable of hitting the back of the net, especially when it matters most.
Time and again, he has proven his worth as one of the Premier League’s most outstanding young players. When you combine his stellar performances with his innate ability to adapt to different team dynamics, it’s easy to understand why Gallagher is making a name for himself as a formidable component of any squad.
For the 2022/23 season, Gallagher has expressed his desire to remain at Chelsea as a first-team player. Tuchel is more than happy to oblige and give the youngster his shot at glory, having gone on record to say that Gallagher is a valuable asset for Chelsea moving forward.
Tuchel elaborated further by saying that, although the loan positions served as excellent training, Gallagher still has to get used to Chelsea’s principles of play. In other words, his knack for being adaptable has to show itself sooner rather than later.
That doesn’t appear to be a problem though, as Gallagher’s first game of the year was a strong start and could lead to a highly promising career.