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Had Drogba not come back, Bamford would've been Chelsea's third-choice striker for this season

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Alex Livesey

Beyond the usual perfect attitude evidenced by Patrick Bamford's latest quotes in yesterday's Daily Mirror, the 21-year-old shed some light on the decision-making process Re Chelsea strikers this summer.

"The original plan was to stay at Chelsea and be a third striker this season. But the chance came to bring Didier Drogba back. Jose said I could stay if I really wanted but he said for my development and to make sure I am ready for Chelsea, the best option for me was to go out and play again."

We're going to need some slow-motion replays for this one, I think.  Assuming Bamford's telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, here's how I think things went down this summer.

  1. We had assumed that Eto'o, Lukaku, and Ba were all off.  Ba may have been a contingency just in case something else fell through, but the first two were as good as gone from the start.
  2. Coming in, Costa would slot in at first-choice, Torres at second, and Bamford (or Ba) at third.  We were probably keeping our options open by sending mixed signals to the last two.
  3. Boro were courting Chelsea hard for Bamford, but we sold Ba to Turkey just as preseason started and thus the order settled down at Costa, Torres, Bamford.
  4. Drogba became a possibility as the European tour began and we were back up to four strikers.  Several teams started knocking down the door again for Bamford loan.
  5. Getting rid of Torres became a possibility.  But since Drogba wasn't meant for anything more than third choice, Bamford was free to go anyway and Chelsea turned to Remy instead to back up Costa.

In the end, it's a win-win-win situation for all teams and players involved.  And Bamford knows his time is near, especially if he has a successful time of it up in Middlesbrough.

"I know what the plan is for me.  When I first signed for Chelsea they didn't really think, with the odd exception, that most players would be either emotionally or mature enough to play in the first team until they were 22 or 23. So if I keep biding my time until then and keep improving, hopefully I will get my chance."

"You can't really turn down the chance to go to Chelsea. After I'd gone to look round at Chelsea and heard their plans and heard the plan until you are 23, I thought playing with better players, and the coaching will be of a higher standard, so I will improve."

"I don't know what it is like for other players but I still have my sights set on Chelsea. I have to be patient."

G'wan, Bamfordinho!

h/t: blue pirate