Chelsea midfielder Tiémoué Bakayoko has worked his socks off to convince people that he was not as bad as the first impressions he made in an AC Milan shirt this season — or as bad as he often was in a Chelsea shirt last season.
And so, he has become a key player in Milan and has been a major factor in keeping the Rossoneri in the top four race in the Italian Serie A.
But the job is not done and he better keep to this path if he intends to extend his stay at the Italian club beyond the current season — his loan has a €35 million buy option. (Gonzalo Higuain is in a similar situation as well).
As told by Milan director Paolo Maldini, their destinies are bonded to the club’s qualification to the Champions League.
“We’re absolutely convinced we can get fourth place. [...] Bakayoko and Higuain? We’ve been clear with the players: the Champions League is binding.”
-Paolo Maldini; Source: Football Italia
That said, other reports like LaGazzetta dello Sport are not so optimistic about this. According to the pink pages, Milan will simply not be able to afford either Bakayoko or Higuaín because of the financial limitations imposed by the lavish spending of the previous ownership, which has not only reduced their ability to spend but has put them in line for UEFA sanctions
It's no wonder that recent rumors had claimed that Milan were hoping for a discount from Chelsea on Bakayoko. But if he continues to play well, Chelsea would be foolish to allow that to happen.