Jorginho is hard to recognize these days, with a scruffy mane and a pirate beard, but we’ve been assured that it was indeed him who came on for the final 10 minutes against Crystal Palace last night, to help Chelsea see out a hard-fought and somewhat lucky victory.
Jorginho’s presence didn’t exactly mean that the last few minutes of the game were trouble-free, far from it, but he did help settle the midfield down a bit in possession, which is to be expected from the 28-year-old regista. For Lampard, this was an important factor in game-management, even as young Billy Gilmour got the starting nod over the much more experienced Chelsea Vice-captain.
“I thought Billy did pretty well. I wasn’t overly delighted with our midfield today. I think considering how they have played in recent games and how slickly we have moved the ball in recent games and rotation, I thought we held onto it a bit long today.
“The reason I played Billy is a choice. The two games Billy played before lockdown against Liverpool, probably the best team in the world, and Everton were fantastic. He trains like that as well, so does Jorginho, he trains really well. Little moments or my opinion of how I look at the game mean I have to make difficult choices through the games.
“It doesn’t mean anything for the future of Jorginho, Gilmour or anyone else in the team, or on the impact that Jorginho had on the team in calming the team down with his passes at the end. I know he can give us that and he will continue to give us that.”
-Frank Lampard; source: Football.London
Lampard may talk the talk about training well and needing both players, but the available evidence of who’s been actually playing does not favor Jorginho. His substitute appearance last night was his first appearance of Project Restart — for Gilmour, it was his fourth, and second start. It’s not a close contest at the minute, which is why exit rumors have once again picked up, including from The Oracle of Sarri.
More recent reports have figured out a way to make the deal with Juventus happen even though the Old Lady don’t really have the cash on hand to help Chelsea recoup most of our €57m investment two years ago.
According to Goal and Tuttosport, Juve could arrange a (multi-year) loan with an (eventual) obligation to buy, which is precisely what they did back in 2015 for Juan Cuadrado. That payment plan involved three years of loans (at €5m per), though Juve ended up needing just one before paying the rest of the fee in full in 2017 to complete the transfer. Chelsea would apparently consider a creative deal like that once again, as long as the total value of the transfer approached at least €45m.
While it’s still unclear why Jorginho has fallen so quickly and (seemingly) permanently out of favor, it’s probably best for us to our separate ways this summer. Chelsea have a plethora of midfield options as things stand already, and that’s before our supposed pursuits of Kai Havertz and Declan Rice that just might bear fruit this summer as well.