Chelsea: Economic, personnel policy to sell oft-loaned or fringe players

Wales' defender Ethan Ampadu reacts after receiving a red card during the UEFA EURO 2020 Group A football match between Italy and Wales at the Olympic Stadium in Rome on June 20, 2021. (Photo by ALBERTO LINGRIA / POOL / AFP) (Photo by ALBERTO LINGRIA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Wales' defender Ethan Ampadu reacts after receiving a red card during the UEFA EURO 2020 Group A football match between Italy and Wales at the Olympic Stadium in Rome on June 20, 2021. (Photo by ALBERTO LINGRIA / POOL / AFP) (Photo by ALBERTO LINGRIA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images) /

Economics and sound personnel management are reasons why Chelsea should offload many of its fringe and loaned players now rather than continue to bench or loan them out. The economic concept is called, “the time value of money“. Now I know as much about economics as a bird does quantum mechanics, but here’s what the term means,

"The time value of money (TVM) is the concept that money you have now is worth more than the identical sum in the future due to its potential earning capacity. This core principle of finance holds that provided money can earn interest, any amount of money is worth more the sooner it is received. TVM is also sometimes referred to as present discounted value."

So you may ask, what does this have to do with Chelsea? The answer is a lot. It applies to the gaggle of players who are either fringe or bench players or perennial loanees of whom Chelsea is realizing a pittance in loan fees when it should be selling them outright and applying those funds to top player acquisitions. And the Blues have a ton of those players who should be sold immediately.

The list is as long as your arm of this type of player who could be sold immediately if there are no plans to put them into the first team. Let’s take a look to see who fits this dynamic. First, there are veteran players who have not made the grade at Chelsea or are out-of-favor. Let’s list them and for the sake of argument see what their transfermarkt values are and assume they are fairly accurate. The most notable in this category are: Tiemoue Bakayoko, valued at $20M; Ruben Loftus-Cheek, valued at $18M; American Matt Miazga, $3M; Ross Barkley, $22M; Michy Batshuayi, $11M; Ethan Ampadu, $16.5M; Davide Zappacosta, $8.8M; and, Kenedy, $11M.

Current roster players also in this category might include: Kepa Arrizabalaga, $14.3M (OUCH!); Marcos Alonso, $13.2M; Emerson, $13.2M; Baba Rahman, $2.2M; and, Danny Drinkwater, $3.3M. Also, three very good players who may be on Thomas Tuchel’s bubble for whatever reasons he has are: Tammy Abraham, $41.8M; Callum Hudson-Odoi, $35.2M; and, Olivier Giroud, $4.40M. None of the three should be sold unless they will continue to be on Tuchel’s bench.

Already sold recently was Victor Moses for $5.5M with a market value of $7.15M. That’s about 75% of Moses’s transfermarkt value. So, using that as a barometer, for the sake of this discussion (it will not happen in reality since not all these players would ever be sold at once and some maybe not at all, e.g. Ampadu) let’s see what Chelsea might realize if all these players were sold at that 75% of transfermarkt value: Bakayoko: $15M; Loftus-Cheek, $15M; Miazga, $2.25M; Barkley, $16.5; Batshuayi, $8.25M; Ampadu, $12.3M; Zappacosta, $6.6M; Kenedy, $8.25; Arrizabalaga, $10.7M; Alonso, $9.9M; Emerson, $9.9M; Drinkwater, $1.65M; Abraham, $31.35; Hudson-Odoi, $26.4M; and Giroud, $3.3M.

Here’s the total at 75% of their transfermarkt value:  $177.35M (if my calculations are correct). That’s an interesting figure since some of these players would likely fetch more than 75% of value, players like Abraham and Hudson-Odoi were they to be sold. That notwithstanding, if hypothetically, Chelsea was to deal all of these players and realize that $177M, they could buy Erling Haaland outright at full cost and have some money possibly leftover. In addition, they must certainly have an allocated budget outside of sales and that could be devoted to another top center back or whatever position they feel needs bolstering after the loss of these players. A left-back would probably be needed, but it’s is highly unlikely that both Alonso and Emerson would depart.

So, the real objective of this exercise is this, Chelsea has resources at its disposal if they sell any number of, most, or even all of these players. As Tuchel has utilized his squad, it seems that little would be lost by selling almost any of them. Outside of Hudson-Odoi and Arrizabalaga, none of them received much of a runout by Tuchel in his half-season tenure at all. (Note: it says here a new backup keeper should absolutely be bought in to spell Edouard Mendy and Arrizabalaga should be sold, regardless of the loss of prior investment. Just an opinion.).

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Chelsea should just sell as many of these players as makes good sense and use the funds for players who will actually contribute to the team. Should additional players be required, then dip into the massive array of talent in the academy with players such as Tino Anjorin, Tino Livramento, Armando Broja, Conor Gallagher, Mark Guehi, Malang Sarr, Trevoh Chalobah, Henry Lawrence, Ian Maatsen, Jude Soonsup-Bell and on and on.

It’s an impressive list of terrific young players who could step up and step in if necessary. They unquestionably should at least be provided with that opportunity. There is no question many of them will excel. Just think back to two years ago when young Tariq Lamptey was put on the pitch by then-manager Frank Lampard. In his first appearance, he electrified the squad with his blistering pace and helped deliver a result in the game. He was brilliant. However, he left for Brighton after the season, since that was the only opportunity he was ever afforded in the Chelsea first team. What all the fans could see the club couldn’t. He was sold for a meager $3.63M in a truly awful sale. His current transfermarkt value is $19.8M.

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That was a bad move by Chelsea then and will likely get even worse in the future. What the club needs now is to adopt a comprehensive player strategy that seeks to minimize those eventualities in the future. It happens by selling off fringe players and loanees who will never see the first team; by buying only top players; and, by filling in any holes with their own young academy players. It’s not rocket science, it’s just common sense and sound personnel strategy. Hopefully, they will come to that realization and implement it.