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Kai Havertz only the start in Marina Granovskaia’s new Chelsea transfer strategy

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Chelsea will welcome Timo Werner to the club on July 1, having signed the RB Leipzig forward for £47.5m. With a reported £10m signing bonus and £14m annual salary, Werner’s five-year deal will cost the club an incredible £127.5m in total.

Despite this stunning outlay, he isn’t the only player who will be arriving at Stamford Bridge this summer. And while Hakim Ziyech is joining from Ajax, there may be further new blood from the Bundesliga too, with Kai Havertz being strongly linked to Chelsea.

With in-form Christian Pulisic having joined from Borussia Dortmund last summer, the Blues could soon have an attack that is well stocked with players who have Bundesliga experience, with Havertz a key target for Frank Lampard.

This would be something of a new development for Chelsea. The Blues have employed managers from across the globe since Roman Abramovich bought the club, and the men in charge have often plundered their former leagues and teams for talent.

Jose Mourinho bought Ricardo Carvalho and Paulo Ferreira with him from Porto, and also signed Tiago from Benfica. Luiz Felipe Scolari brought in Deco, with whom he’d managed with Portugal, while more recently Maurizio Sarri signed Jorginho from Napoli, and is now looking to link up with him for a third team at Juventus.

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It’s therefore interesting that Chelsea now seem to be targeting players from Germany when Lampard has neither played nor managed there (though the greatest night of his Blues’ career took place in Munich). Decisions on signings are not just taken by the manager at the club though, with Marina Granovskaia among the people involved in securing new players.

Germany has been more of a destination for on-loan Chelsea players rather than somewhere from which the club have purchased new signings. Michael Ballack and Claudio Pizarro both joined from Bayern Munich but were free transfers – enormous salaries aside, no doubt – while Andre Schurrle signed from Bayer Leverkusen in 2013.

Several youngsters have gone from the Blues to the Bundesliga on loan though. For instance, the club’s only dealing with Dortmund prior to the signing of Pulisic was to send Michy Batshuyai there for the second half of the 2017/18 season. Ethan Ampadu has been at RB Leipzig with Werner this season, while Thorgan Hazard spent 2014/15 on loan with Borussia Monchengladbach ahead of making the move permanent.

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However, there is one man who has gone to Germany on loan and returned to Chelsea to make an impact: Andreas Christensen.

The Dane enjoyed a two-year spell at Monchengladbach between 2015 and 2017, in which he made 62 Bundesliga appearances and scored five goals (per Whoscored). He returned from Germany to play 27 league games in Antonio Conte’s final season in west London, though he featured far less regularly under Sarri.

Lampard has shown greater faith in the 24-year old this season, and particularly in the second half of the campaign, as he has only sat out one league fixture since New Year’s Day. With Werner likely to do well, if Pulisic and Christensen can continue to impress then Chelsea might soon appear to be an enticing prospect for the top young talent in Germany.


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