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Chelsea loan roundup and the week ahead: 9/16/11

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We'll start this weeks loan roundup with some news that seems to have slipped through the cracks last week.  Nineteen year old keeper Matej Delac was sent out on loan to Czech side SK Dynamo*.  Apparently this deal had been finished prior to the Czech deadline and simply not announced, and the media didn't seem interested enough in Delac to ask.  Dynamo have been awful thus far this season, managing only 1 point from their opening 6 fixtures.  Pavel Kucera has done little to inspire thus far in goal, so it's very possible that Delac could be pushing him for playing time very soon.  After last year's lack of playing time, I'm sure the club was looking for some sort of assurances that he'd play.  While it seems unlikely he'd start tomorrow's game having just officially joined the club, it is certainly possible.  Delac will be added to the regular loan roundup beginning next week.

*Update: Chelsea has now confirmed the loan of Delac on their official website

Other than that, there hasn't been anything announced in the way of new loans this week.  The loan window for lower division clubs is now open, so I'd guess we'll be seeing some of our younger players who are too old for the youth level heading out very soon (Jacob Mellis, Billy Clifford, etc.).  We'll keep you up to date as those are announced.  As for the 10 players we sent out prior to the close of the window, I'll recap their week and give you a look ahead after the jump.


  • Yossi Benayoun - I'll start with the elder statesman of the group.  Benayoun featured twice for Arsenal this week, coming on in the 63rd minute against Swansea and then playing the full 90 in the Champions League tie against Borussia Dortmund.  Yossi was about the same player we've come to expect, and it was nice to see him getting some playing time.  He'll have two more opportunities to play this week for his new club.  Arsenal play at Blackburn on 9/17 at 7:45 AM EST before hosting Shrewsbury on 9/20 at 2:45 PM EST in a Carling Cup tie.  I'd be surprised to see Benayoun participate in the cup tie, as Arsenal typically field a very young squad for those matches.
  • Thibaut Courtois had a very impressive week.  He cemented himself as the regular starter with two more solid efforts in goal for Atletico.  Last Saturday he made several very nice saves in the club's 1-0 loss to Valencia before keeping yet another clean sheet midweek against Celtic.  To this point in the season, Courtois has been one of the most impressive players in La Liga.  If you have access to any of their matches, there will be two more chances to see Coutois play this week.  Atletico will play Sunday 9/18 at home against Racing Setander at noon EST before hosting Sporting Gijon on 9/21 at 2 EST.  I'd expect two more starts for the big Belgian, and the way he's been playing I'd be surprised if there's not at least one more clean sheet in there.  Goalkeepers are tough to evaluate based on what we see watching the games, but it's not hard at all to see why we targeted Courtois.
  • Tomas Kalas and Ulises Davila had quiet weeks in the Netherlands.  Kalas was an unused sub and Davila was not included in the squad in a 4-0 loss to AZ Alkmaar.  The two will both likely see their first action of the campaign tomorrow as Vitesse host the much weaker Roda JC at 1:45 PM EST.  I'd expect to see Kalas start and Davila will likely be on the bench for this one.
  • Jeffrey Bruma was an unused substitute in his club's only fixture last week.  Werder Bremen defeated Hamburg 2-0 as Frank Arnesen's new club continued their ultra defensive tactics.  They take the pitch again tomorrow morning as they host Borussia Monchengladboch at 9:30 AM EST.  I have no idea what to make of the situation in Hamburg, I really hope that Bruma can beat out Michael Mancienne for some playing time soon.
  • Patrick van Aanholt got his first run as a Lactic this week.  After sitting out the drubbing they recieved at the feet of Sergio Aguero last weekend, PvA got his first start and played the full 90 in Wigan's 2-1 Carling Cup loss to Crystal Palace.  PvA looked pretty good in general in this contest, as most of the Wigan threat came down the left flank.  The defense was a bit unorganized, but that's to be expected when the club ran out 4 different players than they did last weekend.  I'd expect to see PvA challenging for a start tomorrow morning when Wigan travel to Everton for their 10 AM EST contest.
  • To no one's surprise, Gael Kakuta wasn't thrown to the wolves in Bolton's 5-0 drubbing at the hands of Manchester United.  He did, however, play extremely well in 90 minutes against a strong Arsenal reserve side midweek.  He'll likely see his first senior action for Owen Coyle's side this week as Bolton have two fixtures on the agenda.  They host Norwich City tomorrow at 10 AM EST before traveling to Aston Villa for a 2:45 EST Carling Cup game on 9/20.  I'm not sure if he'll be allowed to feature in the Carling Cup as he's only a half season loan, but I'd certainly expect Coyle to let him get his feet wet against Norwich.  Here's hoping he impresses, as he's certainly another interesting player we could use next season (or even in the second half this year).
  • Ben Gordon was an unused substitute in Peterborough's 1-0 loss to Hull City.  He'll have a chance to return to the pitch as the club hosts Burnley tomorrow at 10 AM EST.
  • Sam Walker had an exceptional week for Northampton.  He kept a pair of clean sheets for the league 2 side in games against Torquay United and AFC Wimbledon.  While he's certainly still on the fringes of the goalkeeper discussion for the future, Walker is showing that he looks to be a capable stopper for someone.  He'll have a chance to make it three straight clean sheets when the club travels to Macclesfield tomorrow at 10 AM EST.
  • Milan Lalkovic only played the second half last week against Cardiff City after traveling to Kazakhstan on international duty.  He was again dangerous despite not finding the back of the net, and it wouldn't surprise at all if he gets his first start this weekend.  Doncaster travel to Reading tomorrow at 10 AM EST in what is the last game of Milan's initial loan deal.  I don't think it would surprise anyone to see the loan extended until January, especially if Lalkovic features tomorrow.

That pretty much wraps up this week, we'll try to keep you informed as to what transpired after the loanees finish their midweek fixtures.  I'd expect the roundup a little earlier in the week next week as Courtois doesn't have a Thursday Europa fixture and Bruma's Hamburg side kick of their weekend on Friday.

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