According to reports in Germany, Chelsea might be close to completing a deal for long term target Andre Schurrle, with the Blues prepared to offer €20million and Kevin De Bruyne on loan for the 22 year old German.
On the face of it, this looks like an excellent move if Leverkusen are not given an option to buy De Bruyne at the end of the loan spell, as Chelsea could then bring the Belgian back into their first team.
However given that De Bruyne has already indicated at times that he is prepared to move elsewhere if Chelsea are not going to give him a chance in the team, sending him on loan as a makeweight in a deal for another attacking player could spell the end of his time at Stamford Bridge before he makes a competitive appearance for the Blues.
Schurrle is a fine player, but are Chelsea underestimating the ability of the man they already have on their books? De Bruyne has been excellent for Werder Bremen in the Bundesliga this season, and also shone on international duty for Belgium last month.
In the same amount of appearances as Schurrle in the German league De Bruyne has two goals less and three assists more than the Leverkusen player, generally playing in a less advanced position. The Belgian can also play almost anywhere around the midfield and attack of a side, whilst Schurrle is clearly at his best on the left flank of the attack, a position that Eden Hazard will be difficult to shift from at Stamford Bridge. De Bruyne seems to have graduated this year from being a promising youngster into a player that could have a real impact at Chelsea next season if given a chance.
Chelsea clearly like the look of Schurrle, and he is an outstanding young player, but if they ending up losing De Bruyne to sign him then they are taking a big risk. Even if they only send him out on loan next season, it is difficult to see De Bruyne then coming back to Stamford Bridge, as the club will have sent a clear message about his status in the team by using him as part of a deal for another player.
image: © Jason Bagley