This week marked the debut performances for several of our loanees, namely Gael Kakuta and Patrick van Aanholt. It also marked the end of the initial loan deal for Milan Lalkovic, but both Doncaster and Chelsea were happy enough with the arrangement that it has now been extended another month. So without further ado, here's how the Chelsea youngsters (and Benayoun) fared this week and what they have coming for the week ahead.
- Thibaut Courtois - I was pretty high on the job Courtois did last week, and this week has done nothing to dim my opinion. Courtois started both games that Atletico played (Setander and Gijon), and kept both clubs from finding the back of the net. Courtois has now played six games for Atletico and allowed only a single ball to get by him. He's easily been the best of the bunch that Chelsea has sent out on loan to this point, and he's looking like a very wise purchase indeed. This week will be an interesting one to watch, as Atletico begin with a trip to Camp Nou on Saturday. That game kicks off at 4 PM EST, so it won't conflict with any games in England if you want to watch (it's on ESPN 3 for North American readers). They also have another Europa League tie on Thursday, this time traveling to Rennes to square off against rumored summer Chelsea target Yann M'Vila. That one will go off at 1 PM EST.
- Yossi Benayoun - Yossi has quickly worked his way into Arsene Wenger's rotation at Arsenal. While he was an unused substitute in the debacle at home against Blackburn last weekend, he played the full game in the Carling Cup tie against Shrewsbury, both scoring and assisting in the contest. Yossi picked up a knock in the waning minutes of that contest, and it appears unlikely that he'll feature in either of their contests this week.
That's it for loan news this week, we'll be updating you again next week after Thibaut Courtois and Atletico finish up Thursday afternoon. If any new deals are announced between now and then we'll make sure to keep you informed.