Chelsea winger Christian Atsu is in talks with newly-promoted Bournemouth over a season-long loan deal that would see him spend his third consecutive campaign away from Stamford Bridge.
Despite the fact that Jose Mourinho himself signed Atsu from FC Porto in 2013 the Ghana international hasn’t featured yet for the Blues’ first-team. Upon arrival the 23-year-old was immediately shipped out to Dutch side Vitesse Arnhem - a regular recipient of loan players from the west London giants - and he’s spent this year under the tutelage of Roberto Martinez at Everton.
Atsu loan spells
Now talks are said to be underway to see him join Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth after an impressive season saw them promoted to England’s top flight from the Championship, according to Sky Sports.
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The Cherries have already secured the signature of former Southampton goalkeeper Artur Boruc and it would appear that they’re planning on moving for a number of other players in order to create a side capable of beating an immediate drop from the Premier League.
With Atsu in mind it’s clear to see what Mourinho is attempting to do by letting him garner more experience away from his first-team.
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Though at Chelsea the African isn’t likely to see much action besides watching it from the bench, through spells at other English clubs he can become accustomed to the rigours of Premier League football before forcing Mourinho to make a decision on his future either way.
Indeed if his time with Vitesse was intended to be a pressure-free introductory year where he could continue to develop in relatively easier surroundings than those present at his parent-club then his time with Everton can be seen as Mourinho’s acid test.
Under Martinez Atsu only managed to play in five Premier League games, providing one assist but failing to score a goal, and he’ll be looking to make more of an impression with Bournemouth.
Last chance saloon?
It may be unfair to suggest that his time at Dean Court will be his last chance to catch the eyes of the powers that be at Chelsea - assuming a deal for his transfer is agreed - but that could well be the eventuality given how cut-throat a breeding ground Stamford Bridge has become for young talent.
A raft of gifted players looking to make their name in football have fallen short of the Blues’ expectations, most recently the likes of Romelu Lukaku and Ryan Bertrand, and it can be safely assumed that as Mourinho bids to build on this year’s Premier League success he isn’t going to let the impeccably high standards drop.
Chelsea fans, what do you make of Atsu from early impressions? Will he ever be good enough for Mourinho’s first-team? Let us know what you think in the comments box provided below.