Premier League

Grading Chelsea’s January transfer business

Andrey Santos

After spending £300m in January 2023, Chelsea went to the other extreme and didn’t part with a single penny.

Instead, the January window was all about clearing up their loan army and making some emergency calls to help Mauricio Pochettino’s squad at no financial cost. There were, however, a handful of significant loan exits.

Here’s a grade for each of Chelsea’s major dealings in January 2024.

Andrey Santos

A new home for Santos / Adam Hunger/GettyImages

Getting Santos out of Nottingham Forest was the easiest decision Chelsea had to make this month. The 19-year-old played just seven minutes in the first half of the Premier League season and whoever signed off on that loan deal definitely deserves a talking to.

Chelsea will have wanted Santos to land at another Premier League side, but it’s a sign of the limited interest in his services that he ended up joining sister side Strasbourg on Deadline Day.

In France, there’ll be more control over his minutes and he’ll be linking up with fellow loanee Angelo. It’s not all bad, but it could be a lot better.

Grade – C

Cesare Casadei

Casadei will stay with Chelsea / Malcolm Couzens/GettyImages

Chelsea’s hands were tied a little with the decision to recall Cesare Casadei from his decent loan spell with Leicester City.

Is he ready for a significant role in the Premier League? Definitely not, but Chelsea needed a midfielder to help cover for injuries and didn’t have the funds available to sign a new one, and so Casadei was brought back.

He offers something Chelsea’s current crop of midfielders can’t – a tall frame that can actually win headers – but there’s no denying he’d be better off back with Leicester.

Grade – D

Diego Moreira

Moreira will finish the season with Chelsea / ROMAIN PERROCHEAU/GettyImages

Did Chelsea recall Moreira or did Lyon terminate his loan? Either way, the Portuguese winger is back at Stamford Bridge and, having already played for Chelsea earlier this season, can no longer be sent out on loan. He’s spending the next six months with Mauricio Pochettino’s team.

The initial loan was a waste of time – he played fewer than 300 Ligue 1 minutes – and the decision to play him earlier this season was a mistake, now leaving Chelsea with a player who is nowhere near good enough for the squad.

Moreira is expected to spend most of his time with the academy, where he is likely to take a spot away from an emerging youngster who has spent the past six months proving himself. Bad.

Grade – F

David Datro Fofana

Fofana has made an impact at Burnley / Copa/GettyImages

Chelsea were among the…

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