“For all three parties it is win, win, win” – Dean smith
The Sun newspaper has been stirring the pot for several days now over Tammy Abraham’s future. First it was Abraham wanting to return to Chelsea, then it was Chelsea supposedly agreeing an £18m fee with Wolves for the transfer of Abraham. Anybody who is familiar with the MOMS Media Muppet column will know their track record with the truth over the years.
Essentially, such stories are a no-lose scenario for the outlet. They can happily put any story out there they want, as enough hapless football supporters will share their links across social media in either outrage or for gossip. The Sun ultimately doesn’t care if the story is true or not – they’ll get decent ad revenue for it, thanks to their unwitting social media cohorts.
The word on the street in terms of Abraham wanting to return from his loan period with Villa, had little credence according to what MOMS had been told.
Also, in terms of the supposed Wolves bid, other journalists have confirmed no formal bid has been made.
What’s Best for All Parties?
Claret and blue-tinted specs would say Tammy Abraham is best served staying at Villa, since he is already banging the goals in. That’s obvious, but it also makes sense for both Chelsea and the player.
The player is best served at Villa to sharpen his skills. He may have scored 16 for Villa, so far this season, but he perhaps should have had reached the 20-mark judging by some of the chances he’s squandered.
Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri also seemed happy to keep Abraham in the summer and didn’t seem too bothered if he went out on loan or not. The player came on as a substitute in their Community Shield game (more of that later) and would have potentially featured for Chelsea in the League Cup, FA Cup and Europa League.
Sarri also hasn’t even made any sounds about recalling Abraham to cover the injured Olivier Giroud.
According to Villa Head Coach Dean Smith, Chelsea and the player are happy with development at Villa.
“In the conversations I’ve had with him he is enjoying himself at Villa and is developing as a player,” said Dean Smith, recently.
“He is very happy and you can see the connection he has with the supporters, the players and staff. We are very happy with the way Tammy is developing as a player and as a person.
“Chelsea seem very happy, as he is developing as a player and scoring goals in the Championship. For all three parties it is win, win, win. So I would be amazed if anything happened to prevent him playing for Villa.
“But it is not in my control. If Chelsea decide to recall him – it is up to them.”
In terms of the development of Abraham, from a footballing point-of-view, Dean Smith would also be a better fit for the development of the player, then say Steve Bruce would have been.
Plus, Villa have Chelsea’s favourite son John Terry watching over him.
£18m Offer Talk
So what about this £18M Wolves Talk? Where did this spring from?
The main driving force seems to be from the fact Chelsea recently signed Borussia Dortmund forward Christian Pulisic for 64m euros (£58m) – loaning him back to the German club until the end of the season.
Ironically, a headline in The Sun last week had read:
Liverpool are on the verge of beating Arsenal to land Dortmund winger Christian Pulisic – The Sun, 29.12.18
Finger on the pulse, as always.
It’s common sense to suggest the hierarchy of Chelsea are thinking that they wouldn’t mind making something back on existing players to offset against the £58m.
Also, there’s no doubt Abraham’s agent would be speaking to the press to get some heat for his client on the back of his goal-scoring streak at Villa and the fact he faces more competition at Chelsea next season with the signing of Pulisic.
So, maybe The Sun are just putting 2 + 2 together and coming out with five…before they’ve considered an important fact.
Invisible Elephant in the Room?
As many Villans have been deliberating in the past week or so – surely Abraham can’t play for three teams this season, as it’s against FIFA rules.
Rules that were upheld when Hatem Ben Arfa‘s move to Nice in 2015 was stifled because he had already played for both Hull City and Newcastle United (U-21’s) in the same season.
Tammy Abraham, as mentioned earlier, played in the Community Shield for Chelsea this season on top his appearances for Villa.
Article 5.3 of Fifa’s regulations on the status and transfer of players says: “Players may be registered with a maximum of three clubs during one season. During this period, the player is only eligible to play official matches for two clubs.”
As the Evening Standard, further point out, Abraham also made an appearance in a Chelsea Under-23 match against Derby County on August 24.
As in the Ben Arfa case, Fifa had previously ruled youth team games to constitute official matches.
No mention of that in the The Sun or most of the outlets have have been piggy backed rumour stories off the back of them.
If this rule holds up, then the main threat to Villa losing Abraham would be him being recalled this January to Chelsea to cover a striker injury crisis.
We may have spoken too soon though…
There is actually one brewing at Stamford Bridge with Pedro and Callum Hudson-Odoi currently out injured along with Giroud.
If current starter Alvaro Morata picked up an injury, then Sarri would probably have to act in the January window or recall a loan.
Chelsea do have the option of recalling Michy Batshuay, as well as Abraham, but it is Abraham who has impressed on loan the most so far this season.
Would either be considered good enough to carry the charge for this Chelsea team competing to win silverware and getting back in the Champions League? At this stage, probably not.
Abraham had struggled in the Premier League with Swansea last season, so with a possible 30-goal season with Villa in the offering, it’s probably in Chelsea’s interest to leave him at Villa for the rest of the season, to not only improve him as a player, but to potentially increase his value – they would potentially have a very keen suitor in Villa, if they got promotion too.
At the moment, the most likely way Villa lose out on Tammy Abraham is to lose him the way they ultimately lost any chance of maintaining the services of the likes of Sam Johnstone, Robert Snodgrass and Lewis Grabban – by simply not winning promotion.
Hopefully, if Abraham stays on, then they’ll be better equipped to do something about that.
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