It seems like a long time ago that Callum Hudson-Odoi was subject to serious interest from Bayern Munich.
A bumper new deal with Chelsea saw him secure his long-term future at Stamford Bridge for the foreseeable future. However, the 19-year-old is probably some way off where might have been expected of him a year ago.
His influence for the Blues this season has been underwhelming compared to the likes of Mason Mount, Reece James and Tammy Abraham who have all become key parts of Frank Lampard’s new and exciting core group.
Since returning from a long-term injury in September, Hudson-Odoi hasn’t enjoyed a run of games in the side to the same extent of other players and a recent cameo performance against Manchester United on Sunday evening showed that he isn’t yet first choice on the right for Lampard.
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Nevertheless, two vital Premier League fixtures remain for the Blues who will be hoping to qualify for next season’s Champions League with a top-four finish. Such crucial fixtures for Chelsea’s European hopes – as well as an FA Cup final against Arsenal – could still leave Hudson-Odoi with an important part to play.
The winger may be contracted at the club until 2024, but a strong end to the season would do him the world of good given that Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner will be joining before the start of next season.
Both attacking players boast good versatility in attack and could, therefore, prevent Hudson-Odoi from becoming a key player for Lampard if he doesn’t maximize his full potential.
One factor that goes in the 19-year-old’s favour is the fact that Willian appears to be holding firm on wanting a three-year deal and is therefore likely to depart at the end of the season as a free agent.
Naturally, that frees up space for Hudson-Odoi in his preferred position as a…