Sunday, December 4, 2022

Chelsea Interested In 17 Y/O Bundesliga Starlet: Where Can He Fit Into Conte’s Plans?

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Diptanil Roy
Diptanil used to be a columnist of The 4th Official. Knows German and not afraid to use it on you.

Chelsea are interested in signing another youth prodigy, this time from Germany. Josha Vagnoman of Hamburg SV has been linked with a number of big clubs including the Blues. The highly rated 17-year-old defender is valued at £2.66 million and has garnered interest from Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Manchester City; Arsenal reportedly even sent in their scouts to track the progress of the youngster.

Vagnoman has been excellent with his development so far and has already represented his country in the national level for the FIFA U-17 World Cup in India last year. He was a key member of the German national team and played every match until they were knocked off in the quarter-final by Brazil. The defender is versatile enough to play as both right and left back depending on his team’s requirements.

The young defender trained with the first team squad last week and it was reported Hamburg wanted him in the squad for their clash against Borussia Dortmund. The German outfit, however, has so far failed to tie him down to a professional contract so far and he cannot play until he signs the Proforms, thus making him ineligible for the first-team action.

As for Chelsea, they are known to be a club who invests heavily in their youth ranks. Michael Emanelo, upon his resignation, said that he was proud of Chelsea’s loan system and went on to add that Andreas Christensen was proof that the system worked wonders. While Christensen’s development testifies Emanelo’s comment, his statement is far from complete.

Chelsea have produced excellent youth products over the last few years. These kids have won every major trophy at the youth level. They have then been loaned out for further development. After that, things go horribly wrong. Christensen is probably the only second player after John Terry to rise through the club ranks and the only one in Emanelo’s ten-year tenure at the club.

Chelsea have lost fine young products in the process, many they have gone on to rue. However, despite losing such players Chelsea have firmly stuck to the plan of bringing in players from all over the world at an early age and then giving them a platform to make it to the first team. Chelsea currently have an excellent youth squad but as mentioned before the problem lies in the fact that very few of them have gone on to make it to the first team.

The transition to the first team remains a difficult jump to make with Chelsea buying world-class talent at the top level on almost a daily basis and with the priority being placed on success rather than growth; the youngsters are given rare chances to settle into the first team.

This would mean although Vagnoman would develop rather rapidly at Chelsea, there is no certainty of when, if at all, he will get the first-team action.

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