Despite recent rumors of Virgil van Dijk, the one place where Chelsea seem to be quite set for the season ahead is at center back. Last year’s starting trio are all back — Captain Cahill, Vice-captain Azpilicueta, and the Greatest Human Being on the Planet, David Luiz — and have been boosted by better depth in Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen, who replaced John Terry, Kurt Zouma, and Nathan Ake. That does leave one spot open, if we are looking to have a backup for each of the three starters, but five should be enough as well.
Either way, young Andreas looks set to be staying with the first-team after two years out on loan at Borussia Monchengladbah and his expected development into an eventual key player at the club should be the next validation of Chelsea’s Loan Army shenanigans (see also: Thibaut Courtois, Victor Moses). Christensen himself has maintained similar ambitions but also warned that he wants a proper chance or he’ll join the likes of Chalobah, Ake, etc in leaving.
For now however, things seem to be progressing well. Christensen didn’t play as much as some might have expected during pre-season, but it is perhaps notable that alongside Jeremie Boga, he was the only youth player to get a start from Conte this summer, and unlike Boga, it wasn’t even due to injury (David Luiz was perfectly fine and came on as a second-half sub). In fact, ahead of the Community Shield match this past weekend, Andreas’s father, Sten, gave a very positive interview to Danish television about his son’s Chelsea future.
According to Christensen's dad, Conte told Emenalo that Andreas is much better live that on TV— DanaBlue (@cfcdk) August 6, 2017
Conclusion: Conte believes in Christensen
The full quotes, as relayed by one our regular commenters from Denmark (good find, ‘Denchel’!), are as follows:
“They rate him highly. They're very happy to have him and they have high expectations from him. After the first training session after his return, Conte had gone to Michael Emenalo and told him ‘He's even better live than on television!’
“He's coming back to Chelsea as a first team player, not as a youth player. But of course he's still young, only 21 and if you look at the guys he's up against it's going to be difficult. But we'll have to be patient.
“Many clubs are interested, top clubs from the best 4 leagues but Chelsea don't want to sell him.”
This is perhaps the most positive Christensen’s camp ever sounded about the kid’s Chelsea prospects. And if Andreas’s father is happy, we are all happy.; source: 6’eren TV