Will young Vitesse loanee Bertrand Traore ever break through the barrier and join the Chelsea first-team?

  • By Oliver Miller
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traore vitchelHis talent is evident, he has pace, trickery and an eye for goal. The perfect foundations for todays winger. His career has been one of mystery to date, with no one ever really knowing whether he was truly a Chelsea player until he signed his four-and-half year deal with The Blues in October 2013.

He was immediately loaned to Vitesse, or Chelsea B to some in England, in the hope that he could build on his terrific pre-season performances in Asia with Chelsea in 2013. Vitesse already had Piazon, Kakuta, Atsu and van Aanholt, to name a few, at the club, all on loan from Chelsea.

The Chelsea-Vitesse partnership benefits both Chelsea and Vitesse greatly. Chelsea get first refusal on any young talent rising through the ranks at Vitesse whereas the Arnhem based club can take their pick of the bright talents Chelsea have in the form of loan deals. Some of Vitesse’s top performers in recent seasons have been Chelsea loanees with the likes of Kalas, Piazon and now Traore all standout players. As is the way with Chelsea though, loanees that impress are rarely then given a chance to progress into the first team.

Kalas’ impressive spell saw him placed in the Chelsea first team last season, only to make two league appearances and eventually be loaned to Köln at the start of this season where he failed to play a single league game. He has since moved to Middlesbrough on loan in the hope of securing more game him. The same can be said about Piazon. Last season while on loan at Vitesse he was right in the mix as one of the Eredivisie’s top performers. There was talk of him returning to Chelsea to fight for a first-team place but that was quickly quashed when he was loaned to Frankfurt where he’s player only eleven league games, scoring once.

This could be the sort of situation awaiting Traore at the end of the season with Chelsea maybe wanting to push Traore into a more demanding league. However, things could be different as Jose Mourinho looks to involve younger players in his team. Youngsters such as Solanke and Loftus-Cheek have both been given opportunities, albeit very small ones, this season. Traore should certainly be considered for Chelsea’s pre-season plans next term. Whether we see him in the first team depends on some issues regarding his work permit, allowing him to play competitive games in England.

His form this season has seen a return of seven goals in all competitions and a new role of centre-forward in recent game, different from his usual role as a winger. However, the future probably sees him continuing as a winger. He’s been easily the most impressive Chelsea loanee this season with both Wallace and McEachran unimpressive.

The likelihood however is another loan deal, with Vitesse likely to be interested again.

Oliver Miller (4 Posts)