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The Ballad of Baba and Chelsea: Left-back joins Schalke training camp

The man in the mac said, "you've got to go back!"

UPDATE: Now it's officially official.


Left-back Baba Rahman has joined Schalke 04.  We're pretty sure this is a one-year loan, but actual confirmation has been strangely lagging from both sides.  What we do know is that the 22-year-old left back has left the Chelsea training camp in America and has joined up with Schalke's training camp in Austria.

So, Baba goes back to the Bundesliga, a league in which he had his breakout season in 2014-15, leading to his £14m (plus add-ons) signing last summer.

Arriving relatively late in the window (thanks in part to a car crash) with a few fitness issues, it was readily apparent that Rahman's strengths lay in the attacking aspect of his game, leading both Jose Mourinho and Guus Hiddink to exercise caution over his minutes.  Rahman made his debut only at the end of October, playing the whole 90 in a 2-0 victory against Aston Villa. Ultimately, he made 23 appearances in all competitions, 15 of them coming in the Premier League.

At Schalke, Baba will face competition for the starting left-back spot from Sead Kolasinac and the versatile Dennis Aogo, so he'll certainly have a fight on his hands when he reunites with Markus Weinzierl, who was also his manager during his breakout season at Augsburg.

Baba's departure leaves Chelsea extra light in the full-backs department and one would expect the club to be actively working towards signing a replacement. Who will it be? Santiago Arias? Ricardo Rodriguez? Good ol' Aina (pun intended)?

Let the left-back games begin!

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