It’s been a bit of a weird ride at Chelsea for Andreas Christensen over the past decade, joining as a teenager back in 2012, excelling and quickly graduating from the Academy, making his senior debut, then hitting the loan trail for a couple years before returning and reintegrating under Antonio Conte in 2017.
He’s now in his fifth consecutive season as part of the Chelsea first-team, but he’s never really been able to nail down his place in the first-team: he’s played in only 87 of our 177 Premier League games over that time. Sometimes he’s been high up in the pecking order and lauded for his reading of the game and skills on the ball (especially when playing in a back-three), sometimes he’s been further down and criticized for his physicality and consistency (usually when playing in a back-four). Sometimes at the same time, because that’s how these things work, sometimes.
Under Tuchel, the (still just!) 25-year-old seemed to be in the ascendancy once again, and for much of 2021, he looked like the natural successor to Thiago Silva, as much as such a legendary act can be followed. But since his heel turn at the negotiating table earlier this season, the narrative has taken a sharp turn for the negative as well. And now he’s looking all but set to leave, at least if the latest reports are to be believed.
But perhaps they shouldn’t be quite believed just yet, with Christensen seemingly not ready to call things completely off with the Blues — despite the apparently very serious Barcelona links.
“Things can still be done. Being part of a winning team is all that I want to be as a football player. It’s hard because all the talks between the club and my guys, I try to keep it away because I want to focus and it’s not changed for me.
“I go on the pitch every day not really thinking about it. I leave that to the club and my guys, and I can focus on playing football. I just focus on winning, really. It’s a difficult situation.”
-Andreas Christensen; source: Mirror
Christensen was unfortunately not part of either the winning or the losing team last night in the League Cup final, with Trevoh Chalobah deputizing for him on the right side of the back-three, and doing a commendable job trying to contain Liverpool’s irrepressible new sigining, Luis Díaz. Chalobah’s here to stay and here to claim his minutes, and his emergence has probably influenced Chelsea’s thinking in terms of contract renewals. If we are able to convince Antonio Rüdiger to sign finally, for example, Christensen’s departure might be restricted simply to financial pain (missing out on a transfer fee and potentially having to spend big) rather than sporting concern.