This time last year, as he was putting the finishing touches on his Player of the Season campaign on loan at Crystal Palace, we were all looking forward to the return and expected first-team integration of Conor Gallagher, our latest Academy graduate about to make the leap to true Premier League stardom and help lead us to more wins and trophies.
Obviously, the season hasn’t quite worked out like we might have imagined it at the time, and Gallagher himself hasn’t quite matched the heights of his performances at Selhurst Park. While he’s about to set a new career high in appearances, he has started just 15 of those 38 appearances thus far in all competitions. At the same time, he’s come nowhere near matching his attacking output at Palace (8g+5a). The heavily deflected goal against Brighton was just his second all season — though the fact that it’s our only goal as a team in five games underlines that this is hardly just an individual failing.
The 23-year-old has thus found himself linked with a quick exit this summer, but despite his subpar season, he’s not lacked for potential interest. The latest to join the likes of Liverpool and Newcastle United are Borussia Dortmund, who are apparently “monitoring” the situation. There’s nothing more to it for now, as per the report from Sky Deutschland, but Chelsea’s valuation is apparently in the €50m range, which would indeed be a handsome transfer fee.
Still, the way I see it, losing Gallagher would be a mistake. He may not be a flashy new big-money arrival, but he’s as young (23) as any of those guys, and has a versatile and highly useful combination of skill and work rate that’s hard to find. Obviously we can’t keep everyone and his potential transfer value may be tempting, but when you add in the Cobham connection (at the club since age 8), his is the sort of pathway that we still have to cultivate and reward even when (and especially when) everything else at the club is changing at a rapid rate.
News #Gallagher: He’s on the list of #BVB confirmed. They are monitoring his situation. But nothing advanced at this stage. No concrete talks. His future at Chelsea is open. Understand he could really leave Chelsea in summer. Valuation of around €50m. #CFC @SkySportDE pic.twitter.com/58wiL4kqRs— Florian Plettenberg (@Plettigoal) April 24, 2023