In an ideal world, Trevoh Chalobah would already be excited and looking forward to what is set to be a fascinating season for Chelsea under Mauricio Pochettino.
Pochettino took charge of the Blues’ squad for the first time on Monday at Cobham as he got to know his new players better. The Argentine even hosted a barbecue for the club’s staff on his first day in his new role as he tries to introduce a new culture at Cobham – a sense of togetherness.
Chalobah was among the players who got to work with Pochettino in his first few days at Chelsea, unlike some of his team-mates who have had extended breaks after representing their international teams in recent weeks. At some point, however, Chalobah – like many of Chelsea’s players – will have to sit down with Pochettino and his staff to discuss his role at the club going forward.
soccer.london understand the defender is open to leaving Stamford Bridge this summer but will not be actively pushing for a move away. The feeling is mutual and Chelsea would be open to allowing Chalobah to leave if the right offer came along, but if a solution cannot be found then they would be more than happy to have the 24-year-old around.
Pochettino would ideally like to have four centre-backs to choose from in his first-team squad, and by all accounts it looks like those players have picked themselves something. Thiago Silva, who has been Chelsea’s most consistent defender since joining the club on a free transfer in 2020, will have another season in west London after signing a one-year contract extension in February.
Meanwhile, Wesley Fofana impressed in his debut season with the club last time out. The France international was consistent in the majority of his performances, but his campaign was unfortunately disrupted by injury problems.
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Benoît Badiashile joined the club in the January transfer window and despite many believing him to be one for the future, the 22-year-old defender made an immediate impact on the pitch. The Frenchman impressed with his old-fashioned defensive style and his modern qualities on the ball. He suffered a serious hamstring injury towards the end of last season, however soccer.london understands he is targeting a return in the next few months and is back in the gym.
Levi Colwill also returns to the club after his successful loan spell at Brighton. The 20-year-old defender has plenty of clubs interested in signing him this summer, but Chelsea insist the centre-back is not for sale at any price, so he looks certain to be a key figure in Pochettino’s set-up in the next season.
So it appears that four centre-backs – on paper at least – are ahead of Chalobah in the pecking order. So a big decision awaits the Chelsea defender this summer. soccer.london understands that Chalobah wants first-team football so he can challenge for a place in the England squad for the EC next year.
Inter Milan have a long-standing interest in Chalobah. The Champions League runners-up held initial talks with Chalobah and Chelsea about a possible move last month, but nothing came of those talks.
Chalobah also has interest from the Premier League. Newcastle United are considering a move for the Cobham candidate this summer, while West Ham United have also expressed their eagerness to sign the talented centre-back.
Chelsea are in a good position when it comes to possibly selling Chalobah due to his contractual situation. The Sierra Leone-born defender put pen to paper on an extension to his contract, which now runs until 2028 with an option for the club to extend by a further 12 months. So there are still five to six years left on his deal, meaning Chelsea are under no pressure to sell the defender at all.
The club have already generated more than £200m in player sales this summer and the window has been open for just over three weeks. Mason Mount, who has now joined Manchester United in a deal worth around £60m, is the latest player to leave Stamford Bridge, taking the money generated past £200m.
Mount joins the likes of Kai Havertz, Mateo Kovacic, Kalidou Koulibaly, Edouard Mendy, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and N’Golo Kante out the door at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea promised to be ruthless this summer when it came to clearing out their squad after what was a dismal 2022/23 campaign, and so far the club have more than lived up to that promise.
Christian Pulisic is expected to join them in the coming days. AC Milan remain interested in the American winger after seeing an initial bid for his services rejected. Lyon also expressed an interest, but Pulisic wants Champions League football at his next club, something the French side cannot offer.
Hakim Ziyech is also expected to follow suit when it comes to leaving Chelsea. The Morocco international was close to a move to Saudi Pro League outfit Al-Nassr, but problems that arose during the 30-year-old’s medical saw that move scuttled.
Callum Hudson-Odoi, meanwhile, has plenty of potential suitors from elsewhere in the Premier League, including Nottingham Forest. The 22-year-old winger, who spent last season on loan at German club Bayer Leverkusen, has informed Chelsea of his desire to leave in the next few months. soccer.london understand.
So Chelsea are in no rush to sell Chalobah. They won’t actively offer him to clubs as they had done with some other players, but if the right offer comes along, it would prove difficult for the Blues to refuse.