Gargantuan were the expectations from Marco van Ginkel when he moved to Chelsea from Vitesse Arnhem back in 2013 but things have not gone well for the once-promising Dutch midfield prodigy. A series of horror injuries have stood in his way on a consistent basis as he is yet to make it into the first-team picture at Stamford Bridge. It was a bit surprising to see the 24-year-old extending his contract at Chelsea until 2019 and then immediately move on loan to PSV Eindhoven.
So what does this move indicate? Even though Conte has not used him in the first-team this season, he certainly does rate him and regard him as an important part of the club’s future. Otherwise, the Dutch international would not have found it hard to get a suitor for himself. He must have felt wanted at the West London club which is why he has committed his long-term future to the Blues.
Van Ginkel was always a very highly-rated player since he broke into the first-team of Vitesse at a very young age and was snapped up by Chelsea in 2013. But his career at Chelsea has been hit badly injuries. In the process, he had three different loan spells with Milan, Stoke City and then PSV. Injuries had followed him to both Milan and Stoke but he did impress whenever he was on the pitch.
The Dutchman helped PSV win the Dutch title while on loan during the second half of the 2015-16 campaign and will now return to Eindhoven until the end of this season. The 24-year-old missed a significant amount of time with injury and will need plenty of time to get his match fitness back, something Chelsea cannot afford to give him right now. They are leading the chase for the title and cannot afford to make any kind of alterations to the winning formula.
Conte will surely keep an eye on how the young midfielder fares for PSV for the rest of this campaign. The Dutchman has every quality to do well under Conte. The 24-year-old is predominantly a number eight but also can play well as a number six or even a number ten.
He has good defensive qualities despite being an inborn playmaker. If injuries stay kind to him in the years to follow, he could be a good player at Chelsea. ‘The next Frank Lampard’ will be too big a comparison but he certainly can create his own name at the London club.