Ryan Bertrand’s time to leave Chelsea has come, Southampton await

The left-back is starring on loan at the Saints and would be advised to move to the South coast on a permanent deal asap.

Coming through a club’s youth system to play in the Champions League final and win Europe’s most-prestigious tournament is something that not many players get to do - but it something that Ryan Bertrand achieved in the early days of his career.

The left-back clearly has an affinity with the west London club after playing a role in the most successful day in its history, but now is the time for the defender to leave Stamford Bridge for good.

The 25-year-old was being touted as Ashley Cole’s long-term replacement with the Blues at a time, but the chances of Bertrand playing regularly for Jose Mourinho’s side if he returns to Chelsea next season are slim.

With Cesar Azpilicueta transformed into a top-drawer left-back and Filipe Luis signed at great expense, Bertrand’s role at Stamford Bridge is destined to be one on the peripheries.

However, this season on loan at Southampton the defender has been a revelation, alleviating the summer departure of Luke Shaw for the Saints and being one of the high-flying clubs most consistent performers.

As such, Bertrand will surely be a player that Ronald Koeman’s men hope to sign on a permanent basis, with an option-to-buy written into his loan agreement.

Other clubs lacking top-notch options at left-back such as Tottenham and Liverpool may well be considering a move for Bertrand, but the twice-capped England man should put pen-to-paper on a Southampton contract at the first available opportunity.

The chance to play regularly in an expansive team that is on the up is one too good to turn down; Bertrand and Southampton are a perfect permanent match.

Although the defender will still dream of playing in more Champions League games for Chelsea, the reality is that he is better served as a star at Southampton than a back-up with the Blues.

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