Footy Extras


Chelsea news round-up: Abraham contract extension, Giroud crunch talks, Ruslan Malinovskyi linked



Chelsea closing in on extension with in-form English forward

Tammy Abraham is reportedly set to be rewarded for his superb start to life in the Premier League with a new long-term deal at Chelsea.

Abraham has been a major benefactor of the Blues’ recent transfer ban, which prohibited the west London side from making any signings over the summer transfer market.

The young centre-forward has made the most of his opportunities, becoming a firm fan’s favourite during the opening weeks of the new season.

Tammy is the joint-highest scorer in the English top-flight so far, and reliable source ​Fabrizio Romano announced on Twitter that the Blues are ‘close to an agreement’ to keep the talent at Stamford Bridge for the foreseeable future.

Romano had also tweeted on 18 September that Chelsea had opened talks with the 22-year-old star over a possible fresh deal with the club, and the board are now ‘more than confident’ that a fresh deal will be agreed.

The striker’s scintillating start to the campaign has not gone unnoticed on the international stage, either, as England manager Gareth Southgate called up Abraham to feature in the senior roster ahead of the Three Lions’ UEFA Euro 2020 qualifiers.

Abraham spent last campaign on loan at Aston Villa, where he netted 26 goals in 40 games for the EFL Championship club, helping the Villans secure an unlikely promotion back to the PL.

The ex-Derby boss has placed his faith in the likes of Abraham, Tomori and Mount in search of PL success, and his trust has been rewarded with some impressive attacking displays.

Chelsea chief will sit down with attacking outcast and discuss about future

Frank Lampard has backed the French star Olivier Giroud’s comments that he ‘doesn’t accept a bench role’ at the club, but Chelsea boss is aiming to convince the forward to stay at Stamford Bridge for the duration of the term.

Olivier recently expressed frustration while on international duty for his country at his lack of minutes for Chelsea this campaign and said that he ‘will make a decision in January’ regarding his future.

A focus on youth this campaign in west London has seen Tammy Abraham establish himself as the first-choice centre-forward in Lampard’s side and he is the joint-leading scorer in the PL with eight goals.

Abraham’s impact has come at the expense of Olivier, whose contract expires at the end of the campaign, and Lampard understands the 33-year-old Frenchman’s frustration with his lack of regular playing time.

“No, [we want him to stay] because at the minute, he is a big part of the squad. As I say, Tammy has been producing but I would sit down with him (Giroud) because I respect him. But no, I want him here,” Frank told reporters at Stamford Bridge.

France chief Didier Deschamps has also echoed the player’s concerns as Les Bleus get ready for Euro 2020 next year when they will be ranked as one of the front-runners to win the tournament.

However, Lampard has been keen to repeatedly highlight Olivier’s professionalism behind the scenes in difficult situations and his words have been echoed by 21-year-old Tammy, who admits he is learning a lot from training along with the World Cup winner.

Chelsea keen on €12.5m-rated Ukrainian midfielder Ruslan Malinovskyi

Frank Lampard is interested in landing Atalanta star Ruslan Malinovskyi after a recommendation from the former Chelsea midfielder Claude Makelele, according to the latest reports.

Malinovskyi has impressed in the Italian top-flight this season and Makelele has personally scouted the 26-year-old star.

Chelsea are drawing up their potential transfer targets for when their embargo expires, which could be in January, and the Express state Malinovskyi has been added to the list.

Claude, a former Blue himself, has been scouting for Lampard this campaign and watched Malinovskyi in action on international duty for Ukraine the previous week.

And after returning a glowing report on Ruslan, Chelsea have been convinced to go after the attacking midfielder. Chelsea will continue to keep a close eye on Malinovskyi and track his performances for Atalanta.

The Serie A outfit are in no hurry to cash in on Ruslan as he is under contract with the club until the summer of 2024.

The club are hoping their transfer ban will be lifted in the winter, but are currently barred from landing any new players until next summer.

Frank is yet to sign a single player as Chelsea manager and has placed his faith in the club’s youth ranks.

Fikayo Tomori, Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham stepped up from youth level and are now established regular first-team players in Lampard’s side.

The Stamford Bridge outfit made a winning return from the international break on Saturday, beating Newcastle United 1-0 to rise up to fourth in the Premier League standings.