Premier League • England

Chelsea superstar saved from exit but concerning sale to be agreed if Pochettino fails at one thing

Reece James, Conor Gallagher, Trevoh Chalobah, Chelsea

Reece James will apparently not be sold by Chelsea, but Conor Gallagher and Trevoh Chalobah will be transfer-listed

Chelsea apparently have ‘no plans’ to sell Reece James this summer, but a failure to secure European football is almost certain to mean Conor Gallagher and Trevoh Chalobah are let go.

The Blues have become renowned for buying what they perceive to be future stars at rather high rates under Todd Boehly. The likes of Enzo Fernandez, Moises Caicedo and Mykhaylo Mudryk are not yet world class – though they surely could be – and they cost over £300million combined.

As a consequence, Chelsea have also become known as a side who allow academy products who’ve worked hard to break into the first team to leave in order to balance the books.

Last summer alone, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Callum Hudson-Odoi and most controversially of all, Mason Mount, were sold as Boehly looked to bring in pure profit in order to stay on the right side of the Premier League’s financial rules.

It has recently been suggested that James could be the next academy graduate to be shipped out, with Chelsea needing to ensure everything is in order after a big spend in the summer.

James has one of the highest ceilings in the Blues’ squad, but is frequently injured, so while he’s a very saleable asset – particularly amid Real Madrid interest – it’s thought letting him go might be worth it.

It was recently revealed that he does not want to leave Stamford Bridge no matter who wants to sign him.

Now, ESPN suggests Chelsea are on that same wavelength.

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Chelsea have no plans to sell James

Indeed, the report states the club have ‘no plans’ to allow him to leave this summer despite the threat that they might not be able to comply with the Premier League and UEFA’s financial rules.

It seems it will be easier for the Blues to remain in line with them if they qualify for European football.

Indeed, doing that will ‘help generate vital revenues’ amid concern about their finances.

English clubs could get five Champions League places next season if the Premier League clubs in Europe this season are more successful than all but one other European country – that would mean eighth place would be given a Europe Conference League place.

Chelsea are currently just a point below eighth and just two points below seventh – which definitely gets European football – with a game in hand, so qualification is still a possibility.

Two sales almost certain if Pochettino fails

If Mauricio Pochettino’s side fail to qualify for Europe, though, it looks like sacrifices will be made in the form of academy products Gallagher and Chalobah.

Both have been subject to multiple reports about their exits, and ESPN states they are ‘set to be made available’ this summer, as the club will ‘likely need’ to ship players out to help their financial situation. That suggests the money from reaching Europe alone won’t do it.

Gallagher’s exit would be a concerning one, as he’s worked very hard to work his way up to the first team after four loans away from Chelsea in three seasons.

He’s now in his second season actually playing for the Blues, and has followed up three goals and an assist last season with five goals and seven assists this term, having also worn the captain’s armband on multiple occasions.

That does not speak of a player deserving of being sold, but Boehly’s desire to bring in big names from outside the club has almost made sure of it, and that he’s a saleable asset and would count as pure profit means he’s the ideal man to go.

If Gallagher does go, Tottenham will be first in line for him, while Chalobah will have a number of suitors despite missing most of this season through injury.

READ MORE: Every signing Chelsea have made since Todd Boehly took over at Stamford Bridge