Chelsea’s January transfer focus was always going to be on outgoings rather than incomings, irrespective of Frank Lampard’s brutal sacking eight days ago, and on that scale it was not a bad window.
Danny Drinkwater and Baba Rahman, effectively deadwood at Cobham, secured loans while Lucas Piazon made a permanent move to Braga.
There will, however, be medium-term questions around the decision to build in an option to buy as part of the loan deal that sent Fikayo Tomori to Milan.
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Many within the club feel that Tomori has the potential to grow into an elite centre back and should he realise that in Serie A it could end up being a regrettable error.
But as one transfer window shuts, focus immediately turns to the next one.
What sort of shape are Chelsea in ahead of the summer?
Thanks to Roman Abramovich’s wealth and the relaxation of financial fair play rules, they have the capability to spend big again.
But much will depend on whether Chelsea are in the Champions League. If Thomas Tuchel can guide the team to a top-four finish, a lot more money will be available and the obvious area to strengthen is at centre back – particularly if they continue with a three-man defence.
The interest in West Ham’s Declan Rice was being driven by Lampard and has therefore ended, but midfield could be another department carrying plenty of interest should the club decide to shuffle things around.
Expect more outgoings in the summer, with a number of fringe players set to run out of contract. In the past Chelsea would have extended their deals and loaned the unwanted back out but the imminent tightening of restrictions changes the wider outlook.
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