Over in Germany, Andreas Christensen is entering the final days of his highly successful two-year loan spell at Borussia Mönchengladbach. With the Bundesliga side having given up on acquiring him after multiple attempts, Christensen seems set to, at the very least, take part in Chelsea's pre-season preparations for next season and then, presumably, become the latest loanee to get reintegrated into the first-team.
However, Chelsea have been strongly linked with Southampton’s £50m-rated center Virgil van Dijk, and recent reports have claimed that Chelsea would consider using Christensen as a bartering chip in addition to all those millions. While those reports originated in the Sun and its ilk, that didn’t stop journalists in Denmark from asking Christensen’s agent/father about it. Needless to say, Mr. Sten Christensen was not too keen on that idea.
"Andreas will not be used in a barter and play for Southampton. There are no ways for this to happen.”
Christensen senior then went on to remind everyone of the master plan, which has been the course set out for the 21-year-old since Chelsea decided against cutting his loan short last summer.
“Andreas should not sit on the bench. He has played solidly for two seasons. Therefore, it is also planned for the future that he will play every week."
As talented as Christensen may be, he’s unlikely to find a guaranteed starting spot at Chelsea upon his return. But given a full pre-season with Conte, if the youngster is indeed as good as his performances for Gladbach have led many to believe, he will likely be able to convince Conte of those qualities as well. Van Dijk or no Van Dijk, Conte has already proven his willingness to work with previously discarded and forgotten pieces of the Chelsea loan machine, and that should give Christensen and his representatives (and his fans) plenty of confidence that his Chelsea story won’t end in disappointment like for the vast majority of youngsters an loanees.