The weekend saw Crystal Palace linked with a potential January move for Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham, who is currently out on loan at Aston Villa and after hearing from boss Dean Smith, it sounds as though the Championship outfit are unsure of the Blues’ plans for the frontman from January onwards.
It goes without saying that the promotion chasers would love to keep Abraham on their books for the entirety of the 2018–19 campaign but with Palace potentially able to offer the striker regular first-team football in the Premier League, Chelsea may well see SE25 as the perfect proving ground for the 21-year-old Camberwell native to truly blossom.
The rise to prominence of Ruben Loftus-Cheek as part of Palace’s first-team last season is likely to loom large in the minds of Chelsea’s coaching staff but speaking without my red and blue tinted glasses on for a second, there is probably a great deal to be said for Abraham staying put in a side where he feels confident for the rest of the campaign.
Despite his tender age, this is already the third loan spell of Tammy’s career but after netting 38 goals in 64 games for second tier clubs Bristol City and Aston Villa, his goal return of just five in 31 games for then Premier League side Swansea City will taunt him until he manages to prove himself in the top flight. Indeed, Chelsea themselves may be loathe to use him in the first-team without having seen him score regularly for someone else in the top tier, opening the way nicely for Roy Hodgson and co. to ride in and save the day.
Had Villa boss Dean Smith sounded more bullish about their hopes of extending the youngster’s loan, I’d have completely written off our chances of landing him in January but the tone of caution in his words suggests we have a chance of getting something ironed out in the New Year.