Newcastle United are reportedly close to sealing a temporary transfer for Chelsea winger Christian Atsu, who is not in Antonio Conte’s first team plans this season.
Sky Sports report that Chelsea’s African winger Christian Atsu is close to joining Championship side Newcastle on a season-long loan. The clubs are in advanced talks and the insertion of a clause that provides Newcastle with the option to buy the player outright at any point during the loan is being considered.
Christian Atsu, who the fans hoped would develop into a world class player when he joined Chelsea from Porto in 2013 in a £3.5m deal, has failed to break into the first-team setup at Stamford Bridge and has not managed to make a single senior league appearance for the club.
The 24-year-old spent the first three years of his five-year contract on loan at various sides including Vitesse Arnhem, Everton, Bournemouth and Malaga. His best season was for the Dutch side Vitesse, where he scored 5 goals and provided 6 assists in 28 league games (stats via whoscored).
Atsu also excelled for Ghana at the African Cup Of Nations in 2015, with a return of 2 goals and 1 assist from 6 appearances, boasting an average rating of 7.70 (stats via whoscored). However, the player was sent out on loan to Malaga last season where he was hugely disappointing.
The move to the Championship is likely to be welcomed by both Chelsea and Atsu; the Blues have no place for him in the squad, while the winger needs regular first-team football to reach his best level once again. Newcastle could be the ideal destination for the 24-year-old to resume his career, which seems to have stagnated.
Atsu would be joining a Newcastle side that is desperate to get back to the Premier League and if the player is able to impress Rafa Benitez, the Spaniard could just attempt to make the temporary move permanent. For now, though, a move to the Magpies would ensure playing time, which would go a long way in aiding the player’s development.