Chelsea should repeat Arsenal transfer move as Gallagher interest could prompt change in direction

Conor Gallagher looks on during the Premier League match between Nottingham Forest and Chelsea FC.

Chelsea may have a fight on their hands with interest reportedly growing in midfielder Conor Gallagher. Aston Villa are the latest club linked with a move.

The England international has been a key player for the Blues this season. In fact, he has missed just one Premier League game throughout the campaign, and that was due to suspension.

He has often worn the captain’s armband, showing his importance to the team. The problem for Chelsea is that the 24-year-old will have just a year remaining on his contract when the summer transfer window opens.

That has prompted clubs to show interest. Tottenham have been strongly linked in the last few months, but the latest reports claim that Aston Villa, who have qualified for next season’s Champions League, have joined the race.

While selling Gallagher would help Chelsea to stay in the limits of the Premier League’s profitability and sustainability rules (PSRs) due to him going down on the books as pure profit, would the club be able to replace what he brings to the side without spending big on a replacement?

The Blues are not the only club who will be restricted by the rules. While they will have Champions League money to look forward to, Villa are still restricted by what they can spend in the summer due to being so close to the limit. Therefore, what they can offer may not be the sort of fee that should convince Chelsea to sell.

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It’s not the first time that Villa have targeted a young England player who is coming towards the end of his contract. In the summer of 2021, the club had multiple bids turned down by Arsenal for Emile Smith Rowe. The highest was said to be worth around £30 million. Just a few weeks later the player had signed a new long-term contract with the club.

There is said to have been no progress in talks between Chelsea and Gallagher over a new deal. But interest from other clubs could and probably should prompt that to change.

Unless they get an offer that they can’t refuse, Chelsea should accelerate talks with the midfielder with the aim of getting him tied down to a new deal. The club will be better keeping hold of players they already have at the club instead of cashing in and having to find replacements, as well as strengthening potential rivals for the Champions League positions this time next year.