Recent Lens signing Elye Wahi has explained why a move to Chelsea did not particularly appeal to him this summer.
Wahi was the subject of interest from Chelsea in the recent transfer window after scoring 32 goals for Montpellier across three-and-a-half seasons. However, he ended up moving across Ligue 1 to Lens instead.
Reports had suggested Chelsea could have just loaned Wahi straight out to sister club Strasbourg after signing him. Whether that was the reason he rejected them, he has not explicitly said, but he has admitted he had little interest in joining Chelsea ‘for the sake of it’.
In an interview with L’Equipe, Wahi said: “Chelsea, I didn’t want to go there just for the sake of it.”
Another route he could have gone down was to join Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga, but that move became ‘too complicated’ while he waited for Randal Kolo Muani to join Paris Saint-Germain.
Wahi continued: “Frankfurt was close, more so than Chelsea.
“I spoke with the manager there [Dino Toppmoller]. He speaks French and that was important for me.
“They had to wait for Randal Kolo Muani’s departure and waiting for it was too complicated. I don’t have any regrets.”
Wahi has committed to a five-year contract with Lens, for whom he has failed to score from two appearances in Ligue 1 so far.
Still only 20 years old, he could have a bright future ahead of him if he can quickly rediscover his Montpellier form.
Chelsea, meanwhile, will have to look elsewhere if they still want to strengthen their attack in the immediate future. Over the summer, they signed Nicolas Jackson from Villarreal to add to their options at centre-forward. but it remains an area they might be weighing up their options for.