After spending almost 13 years of his life as a Chelsea prospect, 20-year-old Dominic Solanke switched allegiances to Liverpool at the beginning of this season. There was a lot said about why that happened and why such a long-term relationship devolved into such an ugly separation; perhaps one day we’ll even know the real truth.
In any case, the switch may not have been as successful as Solanke may have expected, but he might feel vindicated by the fact that the 726 minutes he played for Liverpool’s first-team across 27 appearances certainly eclipse the 17 minutes he collected in his one and only Chelsea senior appearance. That he did it while competing against the likes of Salah, Mane, Firmino, Sturridge, and Ings, and finally scoring his first goal on the last day of the season, too, surely gives him a very hopeful outlook for the future.
Solanke may have moved to Liverpool after his Chelsea contract had expired, but as per FIFA rules, there has to be a compensation payment as the player was under 24 years of age. The two clubs were unable to agree on a fee at the time of the transfer, so this was supposed to be (eventually) decided by the Professional Football Compensation Committee (PFCC). But that tribunal moves very slowly, and so according to ESPN, Chelsea and Liverpool are set to return to the negotiating table at the end of the season and figure something out.
This strikes us a bit of an unusual move, but perhaps Chelsea were encouraged to do so after the tribunal set Ethan Ampadu’s compensation fee at a price lower than what Chelsea were willing to pay to Exeter in the first place. The lower league side took their chances with the tribunal and “lost”, in a sense, so maybe we’re trying to avoid falling into the same trap ourselves.