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October 2016
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Chelsea lead the Premier League in the number of players that they have out on loan.

by Andrew Crawshaw

Chelsea lead the Premier League in the number of players that they have out on loan to other clubs.

According to Sky Sports, following the closing of the transfer window the 20 clubs in the PL have a total of 169 players out on loan across the world.  Chelsea are far and away the leaders in this process with 38, Man City are second with 17, Liverpool and West Ham each have 12 and Swansea have 11.  Arsenal, along with Everton, Man United and West Brom each have 6 and at the bottom of this particular league table Hull have one.  (But see my note below).

In my opinion there are a number of possible reasons for a player to be sent out on loan

  1. A young professional needing regular first team games to learn and develop his game
  2. A player coming back from injury who needs game time, possibly at a lower level, to regain match fitness and confidence
  3. Effectively a ‘kick up the backside’ but giving the player a chance to re-gain his form and convince his manager that he deserves a second chance
  4. The first step out of the door.  The player has no chance of playing for his own club but either can’t or won’t join another.  Maybe his current wages are too high or he is happy warming the bench.
  5. A player bought for the future but isn’t yet ready to play for his own club.

As Arsenal actually have 13 players (5 from our first team squad and 8 young professionals) out on loan clearly the Sky Sports figures are wrong to some degree but the Chelsea numbers are very different from anyone else.

Who are these Chelsea players, where are they and what might Chelsea gain from these arrangements?

Loans to English Clubs: Premier League

  1. Nathan Ake (Bournemouth). DoB 18:2:95.  Counts as an U21 player this season.  Nathan is Dutch and signed for Chelsea in 2011 so will count as Home Grown when he turns 21.  He is a defender and his loan seems straightforward to gain more experience.  Loan Type 1.
  2. Patrick Bamford (Burnley).  DoB 5:9:93.  Patrick is an England U21 International who joined Chelsea from Nottingham Forest in January 2011 for a reported fee of £1.5m.  He has been loaned to MK Dons in Nov 2012 staying with them until Dec 2013.  In January 2014 he joined Derby County where he stayed for the rest of the season.  In August 2014 he joined Middlesbrough where he stayed for the season.  He spent the first half of 2015-16 on loan with Crystal Palace transferring to Norwich in January.  A loan hoping that he will either fully develop as a striker/attacking midfielder or showcase his talents to turn a profit on Chelsea’s initial investment.  The signs aren’t good though.  He scored plenty of goals at Championship level (19 in 44 starts in 2014-15) but hasn’t been able to replicate that so far in the Premiership (0 in 16 appearances last season). Loan type 5.
  3. Kenedy (Watford). DoB 6:2:96 is a Brazilian winger/left back who joined Chelsea in June 2015 for a reported fee of £6.3m.  He does not appear to classify as Home Grown.  He made 20 appearances last year for Chelsea scoring 2 goals.  Not an overwhelming success last year this loan seems to be designed for him to gain more experience. Loan Type 1.
  4. Loic Remy (Crystal Palace) DoB 2:1:87.  Signed for Chelsea for a reputed fee of £10.5m in Summer 2014.  He is a French forward age 29. In 2014/15 and 2015/16 he played a total of 47 games for Chelsea scoring a total of 12 goals.  This loan seems to be the first step in him leaving Chelsea. Loan Type 4.

Loans to English Clubs: Championship

  1. Tammy Abraham (Bristol City)  DoB 2:10:97 Tammy is a 6ft3in striker who has England Youth Caps at U18 and U19 level.  He has been at the Chelsea Academy since the age of 8.  This is his first spell away from Chelsea and it seems a straightforward Type 1 loan.
  2. Christian Atsu (Newcastle United)  DoB 10:1:92.  Christian is Ghanaian and joined Chelsea in Summer of 2013 for a reported fee of £3.5m.  Primarily a winger or attacking midfielder.  Looks like a type 4 loan.
  3. Isaiah Brown (Rotherham United) DoB 7:1:97 Isaiah is 19 years old and English, he was developed through the West Brom Academy joining Chelsea in July 2013 for a nominal fee.  Isaiah spent 2015/16 on loan at Dutch side Vitesse where he had 24 starts and scored one goal.  Looks like a type 1 Loan.
  4. Tomáš Kalas (Fulham) DoB 15:3:93.  Tomáš is Czech and right or Centre Back.  He signed for Chelsea in August 2011 from Sigma Olomouc for a reputed figure of £5.2m but didn’t join Chelsea till the second half of the season.  Spent 2011/12 and 2012/13 on loan at Vitesse Arnhem.  He was injured in pre-season 2013/14 not making his first team debut until October.  He went on loan to Köln for 2014/15 but only played twice for their reserves and transferred to Middlesbrough in Jan 2015 and stayed through the 2015/16 season.  The Fulham loan will represent his third full year on loan.  Looks like a Type 4 Loan.
  5. Lucas Piazon (Fulham) DoB 20:1:1994  Lucas is a 22 year old Brazilian who is primarily a striker.  Chelsea signed him in Summer 2011 for a rumoured fee of £5m but couldn’t actually join the club till he turned 18.  He had 3 appearances for Chelsea in 2012-13 but has spent his entire playing time since then on loan with Malaga, Vitesse Arnhem, Frankfurt and Reading.  A Type 5 Transfer.
  6. Kasey Palmer (Huddersfield Town) DoB 9:11:96  Kasey is a 19 year old midfielder who has played at U17 to U21 levels for England.  This is a straightforward Type 1 Loan.

Loans to English Clubs: League 1

  1. Jake Clarke-Salter (Bristol Rover) DoB 22:11:97.  Jake is English, 18 years old  and a tall defender.  This is a straightforward Type 1 Loan.
  2. Charlie Colkett (Bristol Rovers) DoB 4:9:96    Charlie has been with the Chelsea Academy since age 11.  He is an English midfielder, capped at every age level up to U20 and highly regarded by Chelsea.  Type 1 Loan.

Loans to English Clubs: League 2

  1. Mitchell Beeney (Crawley Town) DoB 3:10:1995.  Mitchell is a goalkeeper and joined the Chelsea Academy  in 2007.  He is the son of ex-professional Mark Beeney.  Looks like a Type 1 or possibly a Type 4 Loan.
  2. Alex Davey (Crawley Town) DoB 24:11:1994  Alex is 21 and a tall English defender who has progressed through Chelsea’s Academy since the age of 10.  He spent 2014-15 on loan at Scunthorpe, 2015-16 at Peterborough and later Norwegian side Staebeck.  Looks like a Type 1 Loan.
  3. Jamal Blackman (Wycombe Wanderers) DoB 27:10:1993  Jamal is 22 and a 6ft 6in English Goalkeeper.  He joined the Chelsea Academy aged 13 and has England U16, U17 and U19 caps.  Looks like a typical type 1 Loan.
  4. Jordan Houghton (Doncaster Rovers) DoB 9:11:95  Jordan is 20 years old, an England U21 midfielder who joined the Chelsea Academy aged 8.  Looks like a typical type 1 loan.
  5. Alex Kiwomya (Crewe Alexandra) DoB 20.5.96 is an English winger or Striker he has caps at U16, U17, U18 and U19 levels.  He moved from Rotherham to Chelsea in 2010 aged 14.  This will be his third loan spell following time at Barnsley in 2014/15 and Fleetwood in 2015/16.  Another type 1 loan.

Loans to English Clubs: Lower League Clubs

  1. Nathan Baxter (Metropolitan Police) DoB  8/11/98  Nathan is an English goalkeeper who has been with the Chelsea Academy from the age of 8.  Type 1 Loan.
  2. Dion Conroy (Aldershot) DoB 11:12:95  Dion is an English Centre Back who has been a regular in Chelsea’s youth sides since 2008.  Again a Type 1 Loan.

Netherlands: Vitesse Arnhem

  1. Lewis Baker DoB 25:4:95.  Lewis is a midfielder who has been with the Chelsea Academy form the age of 9.  He has England caps at U17, U19, U20 and U21 levels.  Made his first team debut in 2014 in the FA Cup.  In 2015 he had loan spells with Sheffield Wednesday, MK Dons and Vitesse Arnhem where he will stay for the rest of this season.  Type 1 Loan.
  2. Matt Miazga DoB 17:7:1995.  Matt is American and joined Chelsea from NYFC in January 2016 for a reported fee of £3.5m.  This looks like a type 5 Loan.
  3. Nathan DoB 13:9:1996.  Nathan Allan de Souza is Brazilian who joined Chelsea for a rumoured fee of £4.5m in July 2015.  He immediately went on loan to Vitesse Arnhem.  Looks to be a typical type 5 Loan.

Netherlands: Other Dutch Clubs

  1. Danilo Pantić (Excelsior) DoB 26:10:1996  Danilo is Serbian who signed from Partizan for a reputed fee of £1.25m in July 2015. Type 5 Loan.
  2. Bertrand Traoré (Ajax) DoB 6:9:1995  Bertrand is a forward from Berkina Faso and joined Chelsea Academy in October 2013 after his 18th birthday.  He has received a work permit so is entitled to play for Chelsea.  Looks like a Type 1 Loan.


  1. Baba Rahman (Schalke) DoB 2:7:1994  Baba is a Ghanaian Left Back now aged 22  He signed from German club Ausberg in 2015 for a fee reported to be £14m potentially rising to £22m.  He played for Chelsea in the 2015/16 season so must have a work permit.  Seems to be out of favour with current manager Conte.  Type 4 Loan.
  2. Andreas Christensen (Borussia Monchengladbach) DoB 10:4:1996  Andreas is a Danish defender with caps at U16, U17, U19 and U21 levels as well as for the senior team.  He signed for Chelsea in February 2012 on a free transfer.  He joined Borussia in July 2015 on a two year deal.  Looks like a type 1 Loan.
  3. Michael Hector (Eintracht Frankfurt)  DoB 19:7:1992 Michael is an English born Centre Back who has chosen to represent Jamaica Internationally.  He joined Chelsea from Reading in 2015 (I have no knowledge of a fee).  Throughout his career he has had a total of 13 loan spells.  I can’t see him having a future at Chelsea but will give him the benefit of the doubt Type 3 Loan.


  1. Cristian Cuevas (Sint-Truidense) DoB 2:4:1995 Cristian is a Chilean left back he joined from Chilean club O’Higgins in July 2013.  A Type 5 Loan
  2. Matej Delač (Royal Excel Mouscron) DoB 20:8:1992.  Matej is a Croatian Goalkeeper who joined Chelsea in 2010 but has had a continuous period of loan spells since.  He has Croatian caps at all ages from U15.  Looks like a Type 5 or possibly Type 4 Loan
  3. Islam Feruz (Royal Excel Mouscron) DoB 10:9:1995.  Islam is Somalian born but has represented Scotland at all age levels from U16 to U21  He started in the Celtic Academy aged 10 and transferred to Chelsea in 2011 aged 16 for a fee of £0.3m.  Will qualify as Home Grown when he reaches the age of 21.  Looks like a Type 4 transfer


  1. Bekanty Victorien Angban (Granada) DoB 29:9:1996  Bekanty is Ivorian who plays either in central midfield or as a winger.  He joined Chelsea in 2012 after a trial but was only granted a work permit in 2015.  He spent 2015-16 on loan with Sint Truden in Belgium.  Looks like a Type 5 Loan.
  2. Jeremie Boga (Granada)  Jeremie is a French midfielder who joined Chelsea in 2008 age 11 when his family moved to London.  He has come through the Chelsea Academy since then earning France U16 and U19 caps on the way.  Looks like a Type 1 Loan.
  3. Charly Musonda (Real Betis) DoB 15:10:1996  Charly is Belgian and an attacking midfielder/winger and joined from Anderlecht in June 2012 along with his two older brothers.  He left Chelsea for Real Betis in January 2015 complaining of a lack of opportunities at Chelsea, this deal was extended for the current Season.  Type 4 Loan.


Kenneth Omeruo (Alanyaspor) DoB 17:10:1993 Kenneth is a Nigerian Centre or Right Back.  He joined Chelsea from Standard Liege in 2012 and has had a series of loan spells since.  His loan spell in 2015 included an option to buy but Kasimpasa decided to take up the option.  Type 4 Loan.


Wallace (Gremio) DoB Wallace Olivera dos Santos is Brazilian and can play at either right or left back.  He signed for Chelsea from Fluminese in December 2012 but remained with the selling club for the rest of the season.  He spent 2014 on loan at Vitesse Arnhem and 2015 in Italy with Capri.  In January 2016 he was loaned to Brazilian Club Grêmio where he will stay for the rest of this season.  Looks to be a Type 4 Loan.


Jhoao Rodriguez (Independiente Sante Fe) DoB 12:5:1996.  Jhoao is a Columbian striker who signed a 5 year contract with Chelsea on his 17th birthday.  He has had loan spells with Bastia in France, Vitoria in Portugal and Sint-Truiden in Belgium not getting mucg game time anywhere.  His return to Columbia probably endshis Chelsea dreams.  Type 4 loan.


  1. Juan Cuadrado (Juventus)  DoB 26:5:1988  Another Columbian who plays as a winger, Juan joined Chelsea from Fiorentina for a reputed fee of £23.3m potentially rising to £26.8m.  His spell at Chelsea has been particularly Underwhelming with 14 appearances in 2014/15 and only 1 in 2015/16 before commencing a loan with Juventus.  He scored no goals in any of his Chelsea appearances.  He has found his feet at Juve where he made 40 starts last season scoring 5 goals.  He might return to Chelsea but I doubt it, type 4 Loan.
  2. Mario Pašalić (Milan) DoB 9:2:1995.  Mario is a defensive midfielder who has Croatian caps at all age levels from U14 upwards including 2 senior caps.  He joined Chelsea in 2014 from Hajduk Split for a rumoured fee of £3m.  He spent 2014 on loan to Elche in La Liga, then spent 2015-16 at Monaco and has now joined Milan.  Type 5 Loan I think.

Link with Vitesse Arnhem

You will notice a significant number of players who have had loan spells at Dutch side Vitesse Arnhem.  Vitesse’s owner Alexander Chigrinsky is an associate of Roman Abramovic.  Over the past few years there has been a close tie up between the two clubs in terms of player development and investigations over the ownership of Vitesse were made by the Dutch Football federation in 2014.  The current arrangements seem to have passed their regulatory scrutiny.


  1. Chelsea have a lot of players on loan – far more than any other English Club but as far as I can see Chelsea aren’t breaking any rules.
  2. Indeed looking at the transfers on a one by one basis, they all seem to make sense.
  3. A lot are junior players who have come through the Chelsea Youth System and have been loaned to get first team experience.  There are some very good young players in this group some of whom should certainly make it into the Chelsea first team in the next few years.  Others will get frustrated at the lack of playing opportunities and will leave for fresh challenges.
  4. I haven’t identified any injured players needing a loan to rebuild fitness and confidence (in the manner of Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere), but then I don’t have the same knowledge of the Chelsea squad.
  5. A few are in the ‘Last Chance Saloon’ with a final chance to impress Mr Conte.
  6. There are a larger number who effectively have been shown the door and whose agents should be banging on the doors of other clubs.  Some of these came in for large transfer fees and will only go when current contracts expire.
  7. A relatively few are prospects for the future who are waiting for work permits or for one of the 17 overseas places coming available in the senior squad.

Recent Posts

The Untold Review of the Under 18, Under 19, and Under 21 squads.

Part 1 – The teams’ performances

Part 2 – The players in detail

11 comments to Chelsea lead the Premier League in the number of players that they have out on loan.

  • Goonermikey

    The motto of the story: If you’re a young player with potential don’t waste your time at Chelsea unless of course, like the first team players, money is one of your key motivations.

  • Bobome

    This is a site for the support of Arsenal FC. Why are we giving such a very large space to Chelsea FC on loan players? Honestly I wish we didn’t spend such valuable time and resources on another club. Of course I exercised my choice not to read the post.

  • Tim Charlesworth

    Very interesting article. Chelsea’s approach is a little odd. They have put a lot of money into developing young players over the last 10 years with very little result. Of course Mourinho is terrible for blooding young players, but others have also failed at Chelsea.

    The decision on whether to loan a young player or not is an odd one, and not one I really understand. Why were Zelalem and Toral loaned, but not Iwobi and Reine-Adelaide? Chelsea seem to put more importance on the experience gained through loans than other clubs, and particularly Arsenal.

  • Andrew Crawshaw


    The question of who goes out on loan and who doesn’t is very difficult for all of us outside the club to understand. I’m sure that it exercises the brains of the coaches to a considerable extent at those times of the year when such decisions have ti be made.

    My guess is that it is a balance between the opportunities of playing in a different environment where existing skills sets have to be adapted or re-developed and the risks of such exposure ruining a player’s development.

    Taking the example of Zelalem – he is extremely talented but physically very slight. Of Ethiopian heritage this is not surprising but one question that his loan to Rangers was bound to answer was that of his ability to withstand the normal ‘rough and tumble’ of a professional league. Could he survive in the Scotish second tier and would he be able to adapt his game to display his talents. To a large degree I think he passed this test and so has been retained for this season. His next test is going to see if he can ‘own’ and ‘boss’ games probably at U23 level. If he passes that test then I would expect him to be fully integrated into the first team.

    Fot Toral, I suspect that there was a question about his ability ceiling – would he ever amount to more than a squad player for Arsenal? He is good but does he have the potential to be great.

    Iwobi has been with the club since he was 7/8. His character is therefore fully known as are his strengths and weaknesses. I would guess that in his case the coaches judged that the risks outweighed the benefits (plus there was a vacant slot in the first team squad in the right position and we should never overlook the influence of luck in some of these decisions)

    Reine-Adelaide is still finding his feet within the club. A loan spell for him would probably be considered next season.

  • Chris

    Can’t remember in which so called (online) paper, but it was one of the main ones, I read the comment that lending Wilshire to Bournemouth was a total abuse of the loan system on the prt of Arsenal…… they just can’t stop it and invent new leasures to be bale to criticize,

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Chris, I would classify Jack’s loan as a Type 2. If it doesn’t work out though or if he can’t reproduce his early career form then it may well turn out to be a Type 4. Either way Mesut seems to have eyes on his shirt number.

  • Leon

    “Of course I exercised my choice not to read the post”.

    Then you’ll have missed the clues to the £100 prize. Too bad.

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Chris, one issue with the loan system is that loan players aren’t allowed to play against their parent clubs (except cup competitions with the express permission of the loaning club). Loaning out a player good enough to influence games against the other teams but him not being able to play against you is, potentially, a sound move. It is perhaps not too serious with a single player but as clubs are allowed a maximum of 5 loaned players in any match day squad with up to 4 being from one team there is clearly potential for the loaning team to exert an undue influence over the outcome of games. I think this is an area where perhaps the rules need some further tweaking, perhaps a limit of one player from any club in any game would be appropriate.

  • Omo r'Arsenal


    You have said it all. Any young player with a view to making it to the top of his game needs a professional club, Chelsea shouldn’t be his ideal pedestal. He might never be known even by face till his ‘career’ is over.

    This is a fan site that looks at football generally from the specific lens of Arsenal.

  • Rich

    Surprising thing for me is the willingness of guys within their system to keep signing new contracts and, to a lesser degree, of young players to join them in the first place.

    The youth coaching is reportedly very good there, and I’m sure the wages are excellent,too, but you wonder what it will take for young players to conclude their chances of making the first team are too small and to look elsewhere. (maybe plenty do decide against it but we don’t hear about them)

    In contrast, with us, I always feel that if someone hasn’t broken through at 20 or 21 it becomes inevitable they will leave, partly because they won’t extend their contracts.

    Gotta admit the situation I’m least keen on with loans is when a player will have only one year left on the contract when they return to the club. May well have been the situation with Hayden, who apparently Wenger wanted to stay and who I was sorry to see leave.

    I can understand the player’s determination to get playing with that one, yet he’s the type of player Chelsea tend to convince to sign a new deal at that stage.

    Two years left means that if they have an amazing year, they have all the power on their return and little incentive to sign a new contract quickly. While if the loan spell is inconclusive or poor, that also makes an exit extremely likely.

    Reports that Wilshere will be in his last year on his return came as an unpleasant shock to me and, if true, make the loan a much riskier proposition.

    The scenario in which it works is that he stays fit, plays well and is then happy to turn down the advances of those who will look to capitalise on his contract situation and sign up with us again. I suppose the terms on which he left dictate how likely that is.

  • Menace

    There is a lot made of the players that are loaned. I think there is a level of greed that we forget to follow, & that is the agent. If each players info is accompanied by that of his agent, I’m sure there will be a pattern emerging. Young players are latched onto by these leeches & are bled through their careers. The money that goes to these leeches is drained out of the game with no benefit to the fan.

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