Marina Granovskaia receives £ 4million Chelsea transfer incentive after Champions League hero – Daniel Childs returns
In the aftermath of Chelsea’s thrilling clash with Liverpool on Sunday, it may have been lost that a familiar face was watching from the stands.
In one of the executive boxes, on the same level where Roman Abramovich and Marina Granovskaia occupy, a supporter above took a photo indicating that former interim boss Avram Grant was present. But what was more interesting was sitting in front of Grant, an academy graduate in Ryan Bertrand.
Bertrand, who is currently at Leicester City, will be remembered at Stamford Bridge for his contribution to the 2012 Champions League final against Bayern Munich.
With Roberto Di Matteo’s options limited due to defensive injuries and suspension, the then-18-year-old would make his first Champions League start for Chelsea in the club’s biggest game ever.
A photo taken via @ ralpha060461 at last night’s game shows Avram Grant and Ryan Bertrand near Marina Granovskaia in the box.
Of course, the night ended in unprecedented glory for Chelsea, and even with Bertrand leaving for Aston Villa and Southampton on loan before signing definitively for the Saints for Â£ 11million in February 2015, the rear has always received warm applause with every return.
Bertrand, now 32, has only been at Leicester City for five months after joining Brendan Rodgers’ side in July after his contract at Saint Mary’s expired.
Things haven’t gone well for him, not appearing in a Premier League game for the Foxes since early October, where he played the full 90 minutes in a 2-2 draw at Crystal Palace.
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Since then, the left-back has been left out of the squad completely in eight of the thirteen matches.
Marina Granovskaia will likely scramble to negotiate a deal quickly to cover Ben Chilwell’s end-of-season injury. Bertrand could act as a familiar face and might be able to provide emergency cover, or at the very least, another option for Thomas Tuchel as a replacement with Premier League experience.
Bertrand obviously still has a good connection with Chelsea since his academy days. He could see a quick exit from King Power this month as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to return home if Chelsea’s other options in the market prove unsuccessful.
Transfer market valued him at Â£ 4million, which is probably not far from what Leicester will cost, given he was a free transfer last year.
Potential recalls of Emerson Palmieri on loan from Lyon or Ian Maatsen from Coventry currently appear unlikely. Thomas Tuchel has already hinted that the club will discuss alternatives in the coming days.
Bertrand’s return on Sunday was probably just an opportunity to look at his former team and see some familiar faces. Still, his abilities as a seasoned Premier League left-back offer another short-term option, with Chelsea claiming backcourt cover for the remainder of the season.
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