Chelsea's summer transfers: The importance of keeping Gallagher and Chalobah

Aston Villa v Chelsea FC - Premier League
Aston Villa v Chelsea FC - Premier League / Shaun Botterill/GettyImages

As Euro 2024 and Copa America captivate the global football audience, Chelsea FC has been quietly yet assertively maneuvering in the transfer market. The Blues have already secured the signings of Tosin Adarabioyo and Estêvão Willian and are on the cusp of finalizing a deal for Omari Kellyman, an 18-year-old talent from Aston Villa. Meanwhile, the club has sold left-back Ian Maatsen to Villa for £37.5 million, marking a profitable transaction.

With the summer transfer window still open for over two months, Chelsea is expected to be at the center of numerous speculations, rumors, and transfer news. As new players prepare to don the Chelsea jersey, some may be heading for the exit. However, the club’s ownership must ensure that two homegrown stalwarts, Conor Gallagher and Trevoh Chalobah, remain at Stamford Bridge.

Conor Gallagher

Gallagher has been indispensable in Chelsea’s midfield, leading the team’s pressing efforts and frequently winning possession high up the pitch. Heading into the final match week of the last season, he topped the charts for possession won in the final third (39). The Englishman has also captained the side in Reece James’ absence, demonstrating his reliability and leadership. Remarkably, Gallagher missed just one of Chelsea’s 51 matches in the 2023/24 season. Though not the most technically gifted player, his relentless work rate, passion, and commitment make him a vital asset. Gallagher's versatility allows him to play as a pivot or even an attacking midfielder, providing multiple tactical options for the team. His significance to the fans was evident in their calls for him to remain at the club. Chelsea must heed this sentiment and retain a player who embodies the club’s fighting spirit, stays consistently fit, and is a fan favorite.

Trevoh Chalobah

The acquisition of center-back Tosin Adarabioyo from Fulham might suggest a replacement for the aging Thiago Silva, but it could also signal Chalobah’s potential departure. Despite persistent transfer rumors, Chalobah has remained a true professional and provided valuable squad depth. He is a proven defender with top-level experience, and his performances in the last two months of the season were crucial for Chelsea’s push for a European finish. Versatile enough to play both as a center-back and a right-back, Chalobah’s adaptability is invaluable. Like Gallagher, he is a Cobham graduate who understands the significance of playing for Chelsea.

In addition to their quality and commitment, Gallagher and Chalobah provide much-needed squad depth for Chelsea. Their experience is particularly vital for a young Chelsea side that desperately needs seasoned players to guide them through challenging matches. Both players have demonstrated their ability to perform consistently at a high level, offering stability and reliability.

In a period of transition, Chelsea needs players who understand the club’s ethos and are willing to give their all for the badge. Gallagher and Chalobah are quintessentially such players, offering quality and commitment. Selling them would necessitate finding replacements in the market, likely at equal or greater costs. Instead, Chelsea should consider offloading other fringe players like Malang Sarr and Romelu Lukaku.

As Todd Boehly and his team navigate the transfer market, keeping Gallagher and Chalobah should be a priority. Their contributions on and off the pitch are integral to Chelsea’s success, and their departure could disrupt the club’s continuity and spirit during this crucial rebuilding phase.