Palmer best, Ugochukwu worst: Ranking Chelsea’s summer signings so far

Cameron Smith
Cameron Smith
  • 9 Oct 2023 14:30 BST
  • 5 min read
Cole Palmer, Lesley Ugochukwu
© ProShots

Chelsea spent a whopping €652.1 million on 13 players during the summer transfer window, with Todd Boehly backing Mauricio Pochettino with yet more investment.

The American billionaire has now spent over €1 billion since he became Chelsea’s owner in 2022, and those rewards are only just being seen.

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Mauricio Pochettino has guided the Blues to three consecutive wins in all competitions, meaning the mood around Stamford Bridge is extremely positive ahead of the October international break.

READ MORE: Premier League Team of the Season so far, starring Salah and Maddison

However, Chelsea remain in the bottom-half of the Premier League table and have picked up just 11 points from their opening eight league matches.

It is still early days, but FootballTransfers have graded each of Chelsea’s summer signings on how they have performed so far.

READ MORE: How much have Chelsea spent on transfers under Todd Boehly?

Grading Chelsea’s summer signing

Moises Caicedo: B

Moises Caicedo’s Chelsea debut was one to forget. He immediately looked off the pace versus West Ham and he gave away the penalty which confirmed the Hammers’ win.

However, he has bounced back since then and his relationship with Enzo Fernandez and Conor Gallagher has formed a quite brilliant midfield trio.

The Ecuadorian’s elite ball-winning skills started the move that saw Raheem Sterling score against Burnley and while he’s been criticised by rival fans, Caicedo has been a brilliant signing for Chelsea.

Moises Caicedo, Chelsea
© ProShots - Moises Caicedo, Chelsea

His huge price tag and his poor debut, however, means a ‘B’ grade is the highest he deserves.

Cole Palmer: A

Cole Palmer showed glimpses of his talent at Manchester City, but he has taken a massive step forward since joining Chelsea.

The Englishman has been the Blues’ creative outlet and it’s no surprise that Chelsea’s recent upturn in form has coincided with Palmer’s addition into the starting XI.

The west London club have won all three games in which Palmer has started and he is already off the mark for his new club thanks to a calmly-taken penalty against Burnley.

This signing was viewed as a slightly bizarre one by many at the time, but it looks like a masterstroke right now.

Axel Disasi: B

Axel Disasi was a little shaky upon joining Chelsea, with his lack of pace a real issue, but he’s grown into his role under Mauricio Pochettino and now looks an assured presence next to Thiago Silva.

In fact, he’s done enough since joining the club for Blues fans to call for Silva to be the one dropped when Benoit Badiashile is back to full fitness.

Axel Disasi, Chelsea
© ProShots - Axel Disasi, Chelsea

Disasi’s strength in duels is a massive plus and he looks at home in the Premier League.

Nicolas Jackson: C

Nicolas Jackson has shown moments of real promise, but his finishing touch has often let him down.

The Senegalese striker buried his chance against Burnley with sublime confidence, but his tally of two league goals is slightly disappointing considering his xG is 4.1.

He missed a big chance from inside the six-yard box against Nottingham Forest and was mocked for his wildly inaccurate shot versus Bournemouth. However, he looks to have excellent movement, link-up play and physical attributes that will worry any defender.

His start to life at Chelsea suggests big things could happen for Jackson at Stamford Bridge.

Lesley Ugochukwu: C

Lesley Ugochukwu has not been given too much of a chance by Mauricio Pochettino since his €27m move from Rennes, but he has featured in a total of seven games in all competitions.

The Frenchman played all 90 minutes in the 0-0 draw against Bournemouth, but he hasn’t yet been trusted with a regular starting berth due to the presence of Caicedo, Enzo and Gallagher.

This grading is perhaps harsh, but Ugochukwu simply hasn’t done enough in his limited chances to justify a higher grading. However, this is likely a season for him to develop as a player while his minutes are managed carefully.

Robert Sanchez: B

Robert Sanchez has been very impressive since joining Chelsea. The signing was slightly mocked given he was Brighton’s third-choice ‘keeper at the time of his departure, but the Spaniard has kept the joint-most clean sheets in the Premier League this season (three).

Robert Sanchez, Chelsea
© ProShots - Robert Sanchez, Chelsea

Furthermore, his ability to claim crosses has been a huge upgrade on Kepa Arrizbalaga, who was typically weak in this area of the game (as seen by his mistake for Leo Ostigard’s goal against Real Madrid in the Champions League).

There have been some shaky moments with the ball at his feet, but Sanchez has been a good signing and could even have been given an ‘A’.


Romeo Lavia and Christopher Nkunku have not featured due to injury, while Djordje Petrovic and Deivid Washington have not been given a chance in the first-team yet.

Christopher Nkunku has not played a competitive game for Chelsea yet
© ProShots - Christopher Nkunku has not played a competitive game for Chelsea yet

Angelo and Diego Moreira were loaned out to Strasbourg and Lyon therefore they aren’t eligible for this grading.

All six players have not received a grade as they haven’t played for Chelsea yet this season.

Chelsea spent a combined €122.1m on Lavia and Nkunku but neither player has been able to make their competitive debut for the club due to injury problems.

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