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Chelsea set to loan out Datro Fofana, Andrey Santos, Gabriel Slonina in January — report

Players for the future

MLS: International Friendly-Club Leon vs Chicago Fire FC Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

Chelsea are close to finalizing two deals for the January transfer window, with teenage talents Datro Fofana and Andrey Santos set to join the club from Molde FK and Vasco da Gama, respectively.

Given their ages but also the non-trivial amounts that Chelsea are spending on their acquisitions — in the low teens, with some add-ons (€12m reported for Fofana; €13+7m for Andrey Santos) — we had been wondering what the club might be intending for them in the immediate future. Would they join the first-team? Would they train with the Development Squad (like Cesare Casadei and Omari Hutchinson have been)?

A few years from now, once the Boehly-Clearlake “multi-club model” masterplan has made some tangible progress, they might be heading out to one of our affiliates, but right now, it sounds like they will be hitting the dusty old loan trail, with all of its usual pitfalls and caveats. Joining them could be goalkeeper Gabriel Slonina, who came over from the Chicago Fire after their MLS season ended last month.

That’s the story from Nizaar Kinsella at the Evening Standard anyway, adding that these players are “seen as players for the future” ... which is fine for now, though we do have to be careful in keeping these players happy and challenged in the process as well.

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