Chelsea's Eghbali risks Strasbourg fury after Angelo decision

Cameron Smith
Cameron Smith
  • Updated: 27 Feb 2024 16:45 GMT
  • 3 min read
Angelo Gabriel, Behdad Eghbali, Chelsea, Strasbourg, 2023/24

Chelsea co-owner Behdad Eghbali has been heavily criticised for his approach at Strasbourg during the January transfer window.

BlueCo, the owners of Chelsea, purchased Strasbourg in 2023 with the idea of creating a Manchester City-esque multi-club model across European football.

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However, fans of the Ligue 1 club have openly opposed BlueCo’s influence over the past few months and their anger was displayed following a dismal January window that notably saw them sell number one goalkeeper Matz Sels to Nottingham Forest.

Only two players joined Strasbourg in January - Andrey Santos on loan from Chelsea and Milos Lukovic, who was immediately loaned back to FK IMT. As a result, Santos was the only real addition during the winter window.

The Brazilian is certainly talented, but he spent the first six months of the season without any significant game time at Nottingham Forest and considering he was the only new addition in January, it was a rather underwhelming window.

Furthermore, French outlet L’Equipe have now reported that Eghbali outright refused to sign a new winger in January, due to fears it may impact Angelo Gabriel’s game time during the second-half of the season.

Strasbourg’s dismal January window

Angelo, 19, is on loan at Strasbourg from Chelsea, after joining the Blues for €16 million last summer, and despite showing glimpses of his talent, he is yet to score in 21 Ligue 1 appearances so far this campaign.

The young Brazilian does have four league assists, but he has not been able to find the back of the net in league or cup action since his loan move to Strasbourg.

Despite Angelo’s poor form in front of goal, Eghbali was reluctant to sign any forwards in January due to the fact that any arrival could impact the Brazilian’s game time, something Chelsea are desperate to avoid.

As per L’Equipe, Mohamed Ali-Cho, Jean-Matteo Bahoya and Ibrahim Osman were all potential options, but Eghbali decided against signing any of them. Strasbourg are now only three points clear of the relegation zone in Ligue 1 and their lack of mid-season investment could ensure that a drop into Ligue 2 occurs.

BlueCo’s involvement at Strasbourg has already angered fans, who believe their club’s identity has been lost, and this latest news could come back to bite Eghbali if relegation does, in fact, happen.

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