Jose Mourinho could worsen Thomas Tuchel's major Chelsea headache despite contract boost

By Daniel Orme

Chelsea are reportedly willing to send French defender Malang Sarr out on loan, with AS Roma interested in taking him to the Stadio Olimpico.

According to AS Roma Live, the Serie A outfit are interested in the former OGC Nice man, with ex-Blues boss Jose Mourinho keen to bolster his current squad.

The Portuguese is already close to sealing a loan arrival in the form of Arsenal’s Ainsley Maitland-Niles, and Sarr could potentially be the next through the door.

As per the reports from Italy, Chelsea have already given their approval for Sarr to leave the club on loan - whilst he is also not short of admirers with the likes of Inter Milan and AC Milan joining Roma in the race for his services.

It makes sense for the Blues to allow the Frenchman to depart Stamford Bridge - albeit temporarily - with opportunities in the first team at a premium.

Having been signed on a free transfer last summer, the now 22-year-old was immediately sent on loan to Portuguese giants FC Porto and has since made just six appearances for Chelsea this season under Thomas Tuchel.

On the other hand, it might make sense to keep Sarr around Stamford Bridge for the remainder of the campaign as Tuchel begins his early planning for next season.

The Blues’ defensive contractual situation is precarious to say the least despite Thiago Silva having recently penned a new deal until the end of the 2022/23 campaign.

Each of Antonio Rudiger, Cesar Azpilicueta and Andreas Christensen are all out of contract at the end of the season and are now eligible to negotiate free transfers to foreign clubs with the opening of the January transfer window.

Should the trio leave, that would leave just Silva, Trevoh Chalobah and Sarr as Tuchel’s remaining senior centre-back options. Whilst it would be expected that the Blues would dip into the market in that situation - Jules Kounde continuing to be linked - the presence of Sarr could prove to be a shrewd one by the club.

After all, the Frenchman would have had a whole season under the tutelage of the German and would be primed to be called upon should the Blues suffer defensive injury woes - as has been experienced at the back already this term.

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Sending Sarr out on loan, whilst giving him the chance of first-team football, would see him playing in a completely different league and in a completely different system under Mourinho.

That then could do potentially more harm than good as Chelsea aim to solve their centre-back problem heading into next season.

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