According to reports on BBC Sport, Chelsea FC are set to sell Belgian midfielder Kevin De Bruyne for $26 million to Bundesliga side Wolfsburg. Chelsea initially bought De Bruyne from Belgian side FC Genk in January 2012 but allowed him to complete the season there. After joining the Blues for their summer tours in Asia and the United States, De Bruyne was loaned to another Bundesliga side in Werder Bremen. De Bruyne shined in Germany, scoring 10 goals in 33 games and playing some of his best football in a very competitive league.
After his loan to Werder Bremen ended, De Bruyne returned to Chelsea with hopes of winning a starting position on the wing or in the midfield attacking trio. However with the transfers of Andre Schurrle and Willian, De Bruyne’s role in Chelsea’s plans was under threat. Having failed to win a starting position or even a bench spot in many cases, rumors of De Bruyne’s discontent began to swirl and it appeared a sale was imminent.
Though this reported sale to Wolfsburg has yet to be confirmed by either the player or the clubs involved, it makes perfect sense for it to happen. De Bruyne is looking for first team football in a World Cup year to cement his place in a competitive Belgian side, Chelsea has a glut of attacking midfielders, and Wolfsburg gets a wonderful player who they may not normally have access to. It also represents a decent profit for Chelsea that will help offset the cost of adding Nemanja Matic to the squad. Speaking of Matic, let’s hope Chelsea have learned their lesson and will place a buyback or first refusal clause in De Bruyne’s transfer.
For a small taste of what Kevin De Bruyne is capable of, check out this 2012/13 highlights video from his loan season at Werder Bremen: