Chelsea AGREE deal ahead of January transfer
The 19-year-old defender was a surprise inclusion in the Blues' matchday squad to face Bournemouth at the weekend, being named on a bench that earned plenty of ridicule on social media given that Chelsea have spent north of €1 billion since Todd Boehly took over the club.
However, after being decimated by injuries, Mauricio Pochettino had to rely on some unfamiliar faces from Chelsea's famed academy, including Gilchrist, though he did not get on the pitch in what was yet another disappointing outing from the London club.
Indeed, the captain of Chelsea's U21s does not yet have a senior appearance to his name, so the fact that he didn't get thrown into the deep end during the 0-0 draw with Bournemouth is hardly surprising. Nevertheless, Pochettino appears to rate him highly given that he utilised him in pre-season.
Now, the youngster has been rewarded for the promise he has shown.
This is Chelsea's bench for their match at Bournemouth today:
Djordje Petrovic (GK), Lucas Bergstrom (GK), Cole Palmer, Ben Chilwell, Ian Maatsen, Deivid Washington, Alfie Gilchrist, Alex Matos, Ronnie Stutter
Only three of those players have made a senior appearance for #CFC
— Sam Dean (@SamJDean) September 17, 2023
According to the Evening Standard, Gilchrist has signed a contract extension with the Blues, adding another year to his current deal which will now run until 2025.
Chelsea fended off interest from Sheffield United in the summer with the Blades reportedly keen to sign the 19-year-old permanently, but he could yet be set for an exit in January.
The above-mentioned report states that he also had loan interest in the summer and that he will likely be courted again in the winter when a temporary move would make sense in order for him to gain first-team minutes.
Despite making the bench against the Cherries, senior football will be hard to come by for him at Stamford Bridge. He certainly won't have a shortage of admirers in January after being nominated for the Premier League 2 Player of the Year award last term.