Premier League • England

Chelsea transfer news: Marcos Alonso decision could spring unlikely lifeline for forgotten loanee

Marcos Alonso and Christian Pulisic

Chelsea have reached a surprising stance on the future of Marcos Alonso in a move that could see a current loanee handed a greater role next season.

The Spaniard, 31, has featured far more than even he might’ve expected this season. Ben Chilwell is Thomas Tuchel’s No 1 at left-wingback, though the England international underwent knee surgery in December that ruled him out for the remainder of the campaign.

The likes of Cesar Azpilicueta and Reece James have deputised on the left on occasion. However, since Chilwell’s injury, the position has been Alonso’s on the whole.

The Blues are poised to experience a defensive overhaul this summer with several key names due to depart.

Antonio Rudiger will leave as a free agent, while Andreas Christensen could be Barcelona-bound. The Catalan giants also have their eye on snapping up Cesar Azpilicueta for a nominal fee too.

Yet according to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano last week, Barca could make it a trifecta by landing Alonso as well.

His current contract expires in 2023, meaning this summer is the ideal time to cash in if a new deal isn’t in their plans.

Now, Romano has shed new light on Alonso’s future, and claimed Chelsea are in fact open to a sale.

Chelsea, Marcos Alonso in agreement

Romano reaffirmed Alonso’s ‘priority’ is to leave the Blues. Barcelona have been in contact and those negotiations are said to be ‘ongoing’.

However, it is acknowledged a deal is in its infancy given Chelsea’s off-field sanctions.

Regardless, Chelsea are now deemed ‘open’ to selling and Alonso has his heart set on returning to Spain.

Alonso exit to spark Emerson lifeline?

His exit would leave Tuchel perilously short in a position that is integral to his system.

Chilwell will return next year, though recapturing his best form so soon after an ACL injury will be difficult.

Alonso’s departure would put added pressure on the next man up, which barring a new signing, would be Emerson Palmieri.

The Italian is currently on loan with Lyon, though it’s highly unlikely that move will be made permanent.

Emerson has shone on the international stage with Italy but is yet to make a real impact at Chelsea. But if Alonso were to leave, he may well be given that chance.

By all accounts, Emerson’s loan stint in France has been a success. At 27, he possesses an abundance of experience and his attacking tendencies would be a readymade fit for the left-wingback role.

Furthermore, retaining him if Alonso goes would ensure Chelsea can splash the cash in more pressing areas of their squad – most notably centre-half given Rudiger’s exit.