Thomas Tuchel clever Cristiano Ronaldo call ensures Chelsea can avoid repeat of £20m blunder


On Saturday, when Chelsea announced the initial first-team squad travelling across the pond for the first leg of the US tour, there was equal concern and intrigue over the exclusion of striker Armando Broja .

The club mentioned in the statement that accompanied the squad list that the Albanian "would look to meet up" with the squad next (this) week. But still, speculation surrounded the 20- year-old following a fruitful loan at Southampton during the 2021/22 season when he netted six league goals.

Football.London understands Tuchel will look at Broja in pre-season. West Ham have shown strong interest, with Everton also interested, including other European clubs.

There had still been some doubt over whether the forward would even make it out for pre-season, but late Tuesday evening, into the early hours of Wednesday, we got confirmation that Broja would be travelling out to LA to reconnect with the Chelsea squad as originally planned.

This move in itself does not guarantee that Broja will still remain a Chelsea player beyond the deadline in September, but it does offer at the very least a chance for Thomas Tuchel to have a close look at the academy graduate over the next couple of weeks, hopefully in some of the games.

Last summer, there was a flurry of young talent let go before the first pre-season game had even been played, with Marc Guehi being sold to Crystal Palace for around £20m. The plus with seeing Broja first-hand is the chance of Tuchel uncovering another internal solution with links to strikers like Cristiano Ronaldo swirling around in recent weeks.

Tuchel is apparently unconvinced by Ronaldo, given the tactical concerns and potential problems that could bring after the Romelu Lukaku saga last season.

Broja, on the other hand, is still raw and developing, a player clearly with flaws to work on but a track record of quick growth through the age levels he's played in.

 Broja reportedly held meetings with Todd Boehly to discuss his future and where he could fit in under Tuchel after a bright season has opened up more opportunities for him elsewhere.

But with Lukaku out on loan and Kai Havertz currently looking like the only player likely to start a majority of games in the centre of attack, Broja could surprise a few and find himself in a more beneficial position come to the end of pre- season.

You also factor in the addition of five substitutes in the Premier League, a manic first half of the season where many games have to be crammed into work around a winter World Cup.

The idea there would be no opportunities feels unlikely, particularly in the potential mess of the post- World Cup period in late December and early January when the league resumes.

Broja can hopefully impress Tuchel enough for both parties to see the benefit of him sticking around this season rather than jumping to a rash decision because of persistent interest.

Post a Comment