Chelsea: Tuchel questioned over 'surprise' £18m Stamford Bridge decision

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel reacts during Wolves draw

Chelsea letting defender Marc Guehi join Crystal Palace last summer was a surprise, says Tom Barclay of The Sun.

The 21-year-old, who has been described as an “absolute tank” by Stoke City’s Josef Bursik, moved to Selhurst Park in an £18m deal and has not looked back ever since.

How has Guehi performed this season?

Guehi has been excellent for Palace since making that move from Chelsea. Under Patrick Vieira, he has got plenty of minutes, which would have been one of the main motivations behind his transfer, and has even captained the team on occasions.

On the young central defender, whose brilliant form has seen him become a full England international, Vieira said back in March (via talkSPORT): “We see Marc coming and going game after game, and being stronger – and being captain in the last couple of games, taking responsibility. He is doing really well.”

Guehi’s rise in English football comes at a time where Chelsea, ironically, could do with a centre-half like him.

Antonio Rudiger will be leaving Stamford Bridge at the end of the season, while there are also doubts surrounding the futures of Andreas Christensen and Cesar Azpilicueta.

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What has Barclay said about Guehi and Chelsea?

Given Chelsea’s situation in defence and the fact that manager Thomas Tuchel uses a back three, Barclay is surprised that the Blues decided to sell Guehi to Palace.

Speaking to GIVEMESPORT, The Sun journalist said: “Personally, I was surprised that Chelsea let him go in the first place given the contractual situation they have with other defenders and the fact that Tuchel likes to play with a back three. You would have thought there’d be opportunities this season.”

Should Chelsea have sold Guehi?

It is easy to say hindsight but, even at the time, selling Guehi permanently did not make much sense.

With Rudiger, Christensen and Azpilicueta all entering the final year of their contracts, it was always a possibility that Chelsea could go on to lose all three defenders. Considering that, keeping Guehi around or loaning him out probably would have been the wiser decision.

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Of course, you can point towards the fact that the Blues aggressively pursued Sevilla’s Jules Kounde, who would have eased their central defensive crisis, while Azpilicueta now has an added year on his existing deal, meaning an exit this summer is not necessarily guaranteed.

Nevertheless, Guehi now feels like the one who got away, and that will not go under the radar if Rudiger and Christensen’s replacements do not perform under Tuchel.

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