The FA are reportedly set to bring in a new rule which will reduce the number of Non-English players to 13 per club. Reports suggest that the new rule will kick in as early as next season and it’s a cause of worry for 13 of the 20 Premier League clubs.
Overall, Chelsea have 22 ‘foreign’ players or in other others, players who are not English. However, the official count of foreign players at the club, as per the Premier League rules, is only 16 as 6 of the players will count as Home Grown.
That means Andreas Christensen, Ethan Ampadu, Cesc Fabregas, Marko van Ginkel, Lucas Piazon and Victor Moses do not count when the new rule kicks in. They can still remain at the club and it won’t be an issue.
However, the problem for Chelsea is that only 2 of those ‘homegrown’ players actually have a future at the club – Christensen and Ampadu. The others are clearly not a part of Sarri’s plans and are on the verge of being sold.
So, the 16 who will be counted are: Kepa Arrizabalaga, Willy Caballero, Davide Zappacosta, Cesar Azpilicueta, David Luiz, Antonio Rudiger, Marcos Alonso, Emerson Palmieri, Jorginho, Mateo Kovacic, N’Golo Kante, Alvaro Morata, Pedro, Olivier Giroud, Eden Hazard and Willian.
Who leaves and who stays?
This is where things get complicated. Chelsea need to get rid of three players but with the club looking to sign new players as well, the number of exits will have to increase.
Reports suggest that Chelsea are planning to go all out to sign Juventus’ Alex Sandro and Napoli’s Elseid Hysaj, Borussia Dortmund’s Christian Pulisic, and Bournemouth’s Nathan Ake. Moreover, they will need to get a striker as Morata and Giroud aren’t contributing enough.
Chelsea will need to sign a total of 5 players. Of those five, if Nathan Ake is one, then he won’t be counted as he is the club’s academy product. So that means, if The Blues need to accommodate 4 new players and reduce the numbers at the squad from 16 to 13, they have to sell as many as 7 players!
Olivier Giroud is out of contract in the summer and that will Chelsea will 6 players to be sold. If Sandro and Hysaj are coming in, Zappacosta and Palmieri will surely be departing.
3 down, 3 to go. Who goes?
The ideal pick should be Willian, Pedro and David Luiz. But with the departure of Willian and Pedro, Hudson-Odoi and Musonda will be getting the nod and they will become the backup wingers to Pulisic and Hazard.
David Luiz’s departure should not be a big issue as The Blues will still have Christensen, Rudiger, Ampadu, Ake and, if needed, Azpilicueta too. With that said, it will be interesting to see how Chelsea go about things.
Another player who might get the axe is Kovacic. Unless he really impresses Sarri and Chelsea get a good deal for him, the Croatian might not be at Stamford Bridge next season.