Chelsea loanee Conor Gallagher has been phenomenal for Crystal Palace so far this season, quickly becoming an indispensable part of Patrick Vieira’s midfield, and even contributing with some crucial goals agains the likes of Manchester City and West Ham United. The 21-year-old even made his senior England debut just the other day.
Gallagher’s certainly enjoying playing for and learning from one of the best, and everyone involved has benefited greatly already.
“Working under Patrick is amazing. He was one of the best midfielders in the Premier League so to learn from him is brilliant.
“He helps me a lot, tactically, and most importantly, which is really good, is how he knows my strengths and tells me what to do in terms of that. That means I am allowed to make the box and do what I do best which is part of the reason why I’ve had a good start to the season.”
-Conor Gallagher; source: Mirror
Unsurprisingly, there’s been plenty of speculation about his fate for next season already as well, with the latest coming from the Daily Mail yesterday in what they claim is an “exclusive” but is little more than confirmation of the obvious. Chelsea were quite clear in that we were only looking to and willing to sanction a loan for Gallagher, after impressing in pre-season but not quite having a spot for him with enough minutes (see also: Billy Gilmour).
Chelsea steadfastly refused to include an option to buy Conor Gallagher when entertaining loan offers for England’s new boy last summer. Expectancy is that he will return to Chelsea next summer with a view to integrating him into the squad. https://t.co/eVQIXUZzMD— Sami Mokbel (@SamiMokbel81_DM) November 17, 2021
Of course, guaranteed minutes are never going to be an easy thing to find at Chelsea, but we can certainly expect the likes of Gallagher and Gilmour to get at least a shot at making the team — especially Gallagher, with Gilmour finding it a tough going at Norwich thus far (though maybe new boss Dean Smith will help change that).
One player who’s unlikely to get that chance however is Saúl Ñíguez, who ironically was brought in as that fourth midfielder cover in the summer, but has thus far failed to even produce to those expectations. He’s fallen below both Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Ross Barkley in the pecking order, and as per the latest rumblings in Spain, Chelsea might as well have torn up the clause for our buy-option.
Atléti are apparently not too happy about this, but we shouldn’t feel too bad given the fact that Danny Drinkwater is still on our books — for example.
And speaking of transfer market silliness, the Italian media continue to breathlessly cover every little breath that Aurélian Tchouaméni takes, and have now claimed that he has zero chance of signing for Juventus, which might be good news for us — provided we can outbid everyone in the upcoming auction for his services, and also fit in half-dozen first-team midfielders into about four spots on the team and keep everyone happy and feeling copacetic.
Here’s a hot take: that ain’t gonna happen.