Chelsea FC 2021 Summer Transfer Window Report Card

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Chelsea FC were the only big spenders in the 2020 summer transfer window, as the rest of the football world kept the purse strings very tight due to covid-19. They parlayed their 2020 transfer window “championship” into a Champions League title in 2021, and this summer they didn’t have a ton of needs to really address.

The Blues did still need a true number 9 as one of the players they acquired last summer, Timo Werner, flopped. They went all in after Erling Haaland, but Borussia Dortmund just wasn’t interested in selling. Bringing back Romelu Lukaku was one hell of a “consolation prize.”

Major Signings

Lukaku from Inter Milan ($135m)

There was just one signing, but it was a huge one in that it broke both the club and the Serie A sale transfer fee record. It’s also a dream move for the big Belgian, who still had unfinished business at his favorite boyhood club, Chelsea.

Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez is set to join Chelsea on loan, but the paperwork still isn’t finalized yet. We’ll have more on that addition once it’s a done deal.

Key Departures

Tammy Abraham to AS Roma ($47m) Olivier Giroud to AC Milan (up to $2m), Kurt Zouma to West Ham ($35m), Victor Moses to Spartak Moscow ($6m), Billy Gilmour to Norwich City (Loan), Michy Batshuyai to Besiktas (loan) Fikayo Tomori to AC Milan (up to $42m), Davide Zappacosta to Atalanta ($12m), Marc Guehl to Crystal Palace ($25m)

This is where Marina Granovskaia truly did her best business, and really silenced the critics. Chelsea has/had a ton of talent riding the pine, so they did a great job in shipping those guys off and getting good cash in return on those sales.

saul niguez

Surplus Players Still Here

The team is still very crowded in the midfield and attacking position groups. On any given match day, you could easily see a combined $200 or $300 million in combined transfer fees on the bench. Given manager Thomas Tuchel’s defense-first approached, some of those midfielders, or even attacking midfielders, might need to shift to a wing back position if they want to play more.

They did a fine job in off-loading players in excess to their needs while also maintaining depth.

Team Needs Addressed and Not Addressed

The first part is all covered, like a blanket, and then some. They wanted central defender Jules Kounde from Sevilla, but it just didn’t happen; for several reasons. When Zouma was sold, it really looked like it was about to come together.

Bottom Line/Overall Grade: B+

It was mostly a summer sell-off, but getting Big Rom was a splash signing. You really can’t find too much fault in what they did.

2021 Summer Transfer Window Report Cards

United   Chelsea   City   Liverpool   Arsenal    Tottenham    Southampton

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America” and “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune.

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