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Tuesday, March 9, 2021

The four Chelsea players with most to lose from Timo Werner’s £53m transfer from RB Leipzig

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Timo Werner’s imminent arrival at Chelsea, who are expected to complete their £53million deal for the RB Leipzig striker in the coming days, has created waves of excitement among an expectant fanbase.

But his arrival may not be good news for some existing members of Frank Lampard’s squad.

Here, football.london names four whose opportunities may be limited by the 24-year-old’s arrival.

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Olivier Giroud

The France striker may have had his contract extended by the club for 12 months but Werner’s arrival could limit opportunities further next season.

He did do well during Tammy Abraham’s injury and looks better placed than Michy Batshuayi – more on that below – but do not rule out a departure either if a suitor offers the right amount of money and guarantees the former Arsenal man plenty of game time.

Michy Batshuayi

What now for the Belgian who had really fallen out of favour before the pandemic?

Basically, he faces an even bigger challenge to earn respectable minutes if he is to remain next season and it seems like the exit could beckon for someone who should be reaching his peak but has never really been able to become a bonafide go-to for any team.

There is a growing sense that if a decent offer comes in he could be sold.

Ross Barkley

The England midfielder may play in a very different role to Werner but should Lampard use the German in a free role behind Tammy Abraham, it would mean a place less in the centre.

Barkley is already down the pecking order when everyone is fit and it will be curious to see if West Ham United renew their interest from January in the next window.

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Callum Hudson-Odoi

The youngster may still be developing and signed a bumper five-year contract earlier this season before returning from his achilles injury but Werner initially broke through as a left winger and that could mean opportunities become more limited.

Christian Pulisic is above Hudson-Odoi in the pecking order for that spot currently and although the overwhelming feeling is that Hudson-Odoi remains part of the long-term plans he will need to up his game considerably.

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