Following the awkwardly public rejection from Christoph Freund, Chelsea are set to “reopen talks” for our vacancy at sporting director, with Bayer Leverkusen’s Tim Steidten and Leeds United’s Victor Orta the two potential candidates named in the Telegraph’s report.
Chelsea were apparently convinced that Freund would join, but he decided to stay at RB Salzburg and let it be known in no uncertain terms, so it’s back to the drawing board for us.
Steidten is a name we’ve heard just last week, though his recent promotion at Leverkusen had already made him a long shot. One of the reasons cited in the Freund decision was his recently signed new contract with RB Salzburg, so if we could go after people who hadn’t just committed their long-term future to a club, that might be helpful. Not everyone’s Wesley Fofana!
Victor Orta is a new name to come up in this regard, though right now this seems little more than just a curious notion brought up by an exasperated call of “so, anyone got any ideas?” in the Chelsea boardroom. Orta has been with Leeds United since 2017 and made his name at Sevilla from 2006 to 2013, while also holding positions briefly at Zenit St Petersburg, Elche, and Middlesbrough.
The report assures that other names have been “discussed” internally as well, but it does not name drop AS Monaco’s Paul Mitchell, who had been seen as the previous frontrunner.