Chelsea have had a host of young talent that went unnoticed in recent years. Their mass-loan system is blamed for such mistakes. We take a look at 4 players that Chelsea sold as youngsters, and they came back to haunt them.
Chelsea bought the Belgian striker from Anderlecht in August 2011 for a fee of about £10 million. The youngster then moved on loan to West Bromwich Albion and Everton in the Premier League. He only made 10 league appearances for Chelsea before Everton turned his loan into a permanent deal fo £28 million, a then club record.
In 2017, Chelsea tried to sign him again, but Lukaku instead decided to move to Manchester United for about £90 million including add ons. His move to Old Trafford turned out to be a disaster for him. He has since moved onto Serie A with Inter Milan where he has 23 goals in 36 league appearances. He has also performed well in European and domestic competitions. Romelu played an integral role in Belgium’s 2018 World Cup squad, where they took home the bronze medal.
There is absolutely no doubt that Lukaku is a world-class player, and selling him was a mistake.
An academy product of Chelsea, Nathan Ake started out as a holding midfielder before transitioning into the center-back role. He did show promise at Chelsea, playing 7 games in the league, but due to a lack of opportunities decided to move on. Ake spent loan spells at Reading, Watford, and AFC Bournemouth. His consistent performances prompted Bournemouth to make his move permanent for about £20 million. After Bournemouth’s relegation in 2020, Manchester City signed Ake for £40 million. Reportedly, Chelsea also tried to buy him back, but the dutch professional decided to move to City instead.
Signed from Swiss outfit FC Basel for a fee of £11 million, the Egyptian king went relatively unnoticed under Jose Mourinho. In his 2 years at the Stamford Bridge, Salah only made 13 league appearances, scoring just 2 goals before moving on loan to Fiorentina and AS Roma in Italy. His performances at Roma made the club make his loan move permanent for about a total of £20 Million. He later returned to the Premier League, with Liverpool buying him for £42 million, with £8million in add ons. This was the start of Salah’s rise to the absolute top.
Since arriving back in England, Salah has won two golden boots, PFA Player’s player of the year award, reached the Champions League final twice winning it once, won the Premier League, and single-handedly took his nation to the 2018 world cup. Currently, Salah is one of the best players in the world.
Kevin De Bruyne
Probably the best midfielder in the world, selling Kevin De Bruyne was arguably Chelsea and Jose Mourinho’s biggest mistake. Mourinho reportedly told him that he was not good enough and he should leave Chelsea and go to another league. The Belgian signed for Wolfsburg in the Bundesliga, before returning to the Premier League with Manchester City who bought him for £55 million.
The Belgian has since become one of the best players in the world, winning the bronze medal with Belgium at the world cup, the FA Cup, the premier league two times, and the premier league playmaker of the season two times.