Chelsea confirm first Enzo Maresca transfer as Tosin Adarabioyo completes move

Tosin Adarabioyo
-Credit: (Image: Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC)

Chelsea have confirmed the signing of Tosin Adarabioyo from Fulham. The defender will join on a free transfer after his contract at Craven Cottage expires at the end of the month.

Adarabioyo, 26, was the subject of interest from both Manchester United and Fulham but Chelsea got the deal across the line. After having his medical with the club on Tuesday he has now signed a four-year deal.

In the process, Adarabioyo becomes the first player to arrive under the management of Enzo Maresca. Chelsea announced the arrival of the Italian last week after the parting of ways with Mauricio Pochettino shortly after the end of the 2023/24 season.

Upon his arrival, Chelsea's co-sporting directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley said, "We are delighted to bring Tosin to Chelsea. Throughout his career, he has showcased his maturity and defensive qualities and has gained a wealth of experience in the Premier League in recent seasons.

"He is ready to make the step up to Chelsea and work alongside the talented players in our squad. We look forward to Tosin joining up with us for pre-season."

Adarabioyo will effectively now take the place of Thiago Silva, who left at the end of his own contract this summer. Meanwhile, Trevoh Chalobah is the subject of interest from clubs across Europe, but understands that Adarabioyo's move will have no impact on his future.

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Maresca is expected to bring in other players to strengthen his squad before pre-season starts with a new goalkeeper, defender, and forward all being looked at. He may well have some extra knowledge about the former Blackburn and West Brom loanee having briefly been at the Manchester City academy together.

Adarabioyo was at City as a junior, coming through the ranks and making his debut for the first team in a heavy 5-1 defeat to Chelsea, incidentally, during an FA Cup clash in 2016. City's side was heavily rotated that day.

Maresca didn't arrive to coach the development team at City until 2020, by which time Adarabioyo was closing on his move to Fulham. The overlap was brief, and Maresca did not manage a game with Adarabioyo in the team, but they were in principle both present at the same time.

Also at City during Adarabioyo's spell were Cole Palmer and Romeo Lavia. The pair are both much younger than Adarabioyo but once more did still come through the City academy. Recruitment chief Joe Shields was also in place at City as well, so was Stewart.