Chelsea transfer window review (Part three): Midfielders

NORWICH, ENGLAND - AUGUST 03: Billy Gilmour of Norwich City during the pre season friendly between Norwich City and Gillingham at Carrow Road on August 3, 2021 in Norwich, England. (Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images)
NORWICH, ENGLAND - AUGUST 03: Billy Gilmour of Norwich City during the pre season friendly between Norwich City and Gillingham at Carrow Road on August 3, 2021 in Norwich, England. (Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images) /

This series will serve as a review for the transfer window Chelsea had and I’ll rate all the deals out of five. Each piece will include both incomings and outgoings, highlighting a specific position group. The third group to be featured is the midfielders. The late acquisition of Saul Niguez from Atletico Madrid on loan provides the club with much-needed cover for now much more injury-prone N’Golo Kante. Nevertheless, the more important task for this window was the sale of fringe players, which was partly accomplished by the club. Here is a breakdown of the moves the Blues made in the middle of the park during the summer transfer window:


1. Saul Niguez (4 out of 5)

The arrival of Saul on a crazy deadline day was a very necessary signing for Chelsea. The Spanish midfielder will provide top quality cover in the middle of the park, seeing that Kante is now becoming more injury-prone as he ages. The Blues paid an initial loan fee of £4.5 million and the deal includes an option to make the loan permanent for around £30 million.

More from Chelsea FC Depth Chart


1. Victor Moses (5 out of 5)

Victor Moses finally ended his nine-year association with the club as he was sold to Russian club Spartak Moscow for £4.5 million. Moses’ Chelsea career has been very topsy turvy, which clearly shows that anything can happen in football. Selling the 30-year-old seems to be the right decision as he is nowhere near the Blues’ first team any longer.

2. Billy Gilmour (5 out of 5)

Billy Gilmour has a very bright future at Chelsea. Having impressed under former manager Frank Lampard, Thomas Tuchel kept him in the first team squad, instead of loaning the midfielder out during the winter transfer window. However, being the fourth-choice midfielder, Gilmour could not get enough game time to develop properly. Now to play regularly, Gilmour has been loaned out to Norwich City.

3. Conor Gallagher (5 out of 5)

Conor Gallagher was so close to being in the first team this season, but for his personal growth and continued development, the midfielder was loaned out to Crystal Palace for the campaign. Now, being the first name on the team sheet, the 21-year-old has had a great start to his career at Selhurst Park. Hopefully he continues his form.

4. Tiemoue Bakayoko (5 out of 5)

Tiemoue Bakayoko has joined AC Milan on a two-year loan deal after his contract was extended by the Chelsea board. His deal will now end in June 2024. This move can be turned into an obligation to buy for £15 million if certain conditions are met. Hopefully this move will finally end the French midfielder’s frustrating stint at the west London club, it’s best for all parties.

5. Faustino Anjorin (4 out of 5)

Chelsea wonderkid Faustino Anjorin has moved to Russian club Lokomotiv Moscow on a loan deal with an option to buy. If the Russian club chooses to purchase the player, he has a transfer fee included for £17 million. Lokomotiv Moscow’s newly appointed director Ralf Rangnick, who acted as Tuchel’s mentor in his early managerial career, was influential in making this move possible. Rangnick intends to make the move permanent, as long as the midfielder plays well for the club.

6. Lewis Bate (5 out of 5)

Another one of the many youngsters that left Chelsea to play in the first team was Lewis Bate. Just like every youngster sold, Bate had only a year left on his contract, which forced Chelsea’s hand in selling the midfielder to Leeds United for £1.5 million.

7. Myles Peart-Harris (5 out of 5)

One more academy graduate who had a stellar season in the youth squad, but has now left the club, is Myles Peart-Harris. The versatile midfielder who can play anywhere in the midfield was sold to newly-promoted side Brentford for £1.3 million. The 18-year-old also had only a year left on his contract and refused to extend his contract with the club.

8. Pierre Ekwah (5 out of 5)

Pierre Ekwah is another one who seems to have unrealistic demands from the club and had only a year left in his contract. So, if a player does not believe in what the club is doing then it’s better to just sell them, rather than having them as liabilities. The defensive midfielder was sold to West Ham United for £1.26 million.

9. Danny Drinkwater (5 out of 5)

Danny Drinkwater has been loaned out to Championship side Reading for the season. The fact that Chelsea bought the midfielder for £34 million still seems absurd. With the former England international’s contract with Chelsea coming to an end just after the end of his loan spell, it seems that the midfielder will be a free agent next season. Hopefully.

10. Thierno Ballo (4 out of 5)

Thierno Ballo has joined the Austrian club Rapid Vienna on a season-long loan. The Austrian u21 international had an impressive season at the youth level and this is his first professional loan spell. One thing to keep in mind is that the midfielder has not been offered a new contract and his deal expires with Chelsea in June 2022.

11. Marco van Ginkel (5 out of 5)

Probably one of the most unlucky player throughout his Chelsea career was Marco van Ginkel. His contract came to an end and the midfielder was not offered a new deal, which gave him a chance to chance to finally sign for PSV Eindhoven permanently.

12. Danilo Pantic (5 out of 5)

Signed in 2015/16, Danilo Pantic’s Chelsea career never took off the way he would have wanted it to upon joining. Having being sent out on loan every year since his arrival, last year, the midfielder was not offered a new contract, which made him a free agent.

Next. Chelsea into the depths part four: A healthy heart in midfield. dark

What are your thoughts on the Blues’ midfield retooling? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter!