Five recent Chelsea rejects the Blues released too soon
Pundits and fans alike have been praising Chelsea (7/1 to win the Champions League) for their recent transfer policy and the west London club have certainly been savvy by raising funds from the sales of fringe players.
However, as the Blues admitted by buying back Nemanja Matic for a princely fee after originally offloading the midfield anchorman for David Luiz, they don’t always get it right.
Here at Coral, we reckon the Stamford Bridge side will really miss the impact of super sub Andre Schurrle, who provided an assist and created the opening for another goal during his recent debut for Wolfsburg.
That got us thinking about which other recent rejects could still be doing a job for Chelsea.
Demba Ba (Striker, Besiktas)
Bullish Ba was always only ever going to be a stop gap solution for the Blues and, despite chipping in with important goals (and capitalising on that infamous Steven Gerrard slip), the Senegal striker was shipped off after making just 51 appearances.
Jose Mourinho may now rue allowing the powerful frontman to exit to Istanbul for only £4.7m, as Ba has grabbed 20 goals and three assists in 26 games for the Black Eagles.
Ryan Bertrand (Left back, Southampton)
A Chelsea academy product, underrated full back Bertrand was farmed out on loan to no less than seven sides during his time at Stamford Bridge.
Having recently penned a permanent deal with Southampton, who are 15/8 for a top four Premier League finish, the 25-year-old finally looks to have a bright future after seeing his progress stunted in west London.
An integral part of a Saints side sitting third in the Premier League, Bertrand’s reading of the game and romps down the left flank have ensured the south coast club barely miss Luke Shaw. So did Mourinho really need to fork out for Filipe Luis?
Jeffrey Bruma (Centre back, PSV Eindhoven)
Still only 23, Bruma made just 10 appearances for Chelsea before finding himself another casualty of the loan system.
Having finally found his feet back in home nation the Netherlands, the sturdy centre back has become one of Clockwork Orange’s most highly-rated defensive prospects.
One half of a successful pairing with Manchester City-owned Karim Rekik, Bruma has been integral in PSV topping the Eredivisie table with the best defensive record in the league.
With the Blues on the hunt for a successor to John Terry, money could certainly have been saved by keeping faith with this youngster.
Kevin De Bruyne (Attacking midfielder, Wolfsburg)
Dangerman De Bruyne has excelled since his London departure, so much so Chelsea are now linked with a summer swoop to bring him back to the Bridge.
The influential Belgium international’s recent link-up play with fellow ex-Blues boys Schurrle will surely have had Chelsea bigwigs holding their head in their hands.
Mourinho’s men would certainly have benefited from the artistry of crafty playmaker De Bruyne, who has 11 strikes and 14 assists this season, in tandem with electric compatriot Eden Hazard.
Daniel Sturridge (Striker, Liverpool)
One of Chelsea’s biggest transfer mistakes of recent times was letting Sturridge slip through their fingers, especially after snapping the forward up from Manchester City for relative peanuts.
A striker who can make the difference, Sturridge could have complemented Diego Costa perfectly, or negated the need for such a blockbuster signing.
Quick and lethal, the 25-year-old would have a field day feeding off the vision of Cesc Fabregas and is already nearing the 40-goal mark for Liverpool, who are 4/1 for a top four finish.