Chelsea news: Thomas Tuchel had previously admitted he was unsure what would happen with Conor Gallagher after this season but his ongoing form at Crystal Palace may make up the manager’s mind.
Conor Gallagher was back in the spotlight during Crystal Palace’s emphatic 4-1 win against Roy Hodgson’s Watford on Wednesday.
Gallagher made it 11 goal contributions in his 22 Premier League appearances so far this season as he added a goal and an assist at Vicarage Road.
The goal was one of high quality, the midfielder stopping the ball dead after a fast-paced cross delivered by Tyrick Mitchell from the left flank.
After trapping the ball, there was only going to be one result and that was the net bustling to the sound of joy from travelling Eagles fans, who were happy to see the first win for their side in the top flight since beating Norwich back in December.
Post-match, all the attention in Patrick Vieira’s post-match press conference was on Wilfried Zaha, who added a world-class goal late on to the first one he netted in the 85th minute.
However, from a Chelsea perspective, all the attention and spotlight was on Gallagher. The 22-year-old now has more Premier League goals scored this season than any Chelsea player, moving one clear of Mason Mount.
That in itself could be a telling sign for what is to come next for Crystal Palace’s No,23 come the end of the season.
Thomas Tuchel’s most recent quotes on the matter suggest that Palace chairman Steve Parish – or another interested party – may have a glimmer of hope in attracting the England international next season, hinting that discussions must be had before a decision is made on his future.
“We wanted to have him here, like I said many times. In the pre-season, I saw he could have a chance to have an impact in our squad,” Tuchel explained.
“He did a fantastic pre-season and he’s a fantastic guy and he cares so much about Chelsea because he’s from the academy.
“It was very nice to have him around and he was impressive in pre-season, and then the opportunity came and they (Crystal Palace) offered him a role which he took and you see what it does to a player if they are needed, if they are playing an important role.
“He was not just offered that role, he took it and he took it with quality, with the energy he has, and now he took several steps in his development which is quite impressive.
“We are happy that he is our player, we are happy it is like this. Would it be the same if he had stayed? Nobody knows, but it was a good decision because he clearly developed and we will take this decision late because there’s no need to take it today.
“The season is by far not over and he needs to finish the season with Crystal Palace in the best possible way and we will see what he wants, what we want, and then we will have a talk and decide. But I’m happy that he’s our player.”
Savenet.one understands that the midfielder is indeed set to be introduced slowly into the first team set up for 2022/23 alongside a new signing on the agenda, with both Declan Rice and Aurelien Tchouameni linked.
Whilst Chelsea fans eagerly anticipate Gallagher’s loan return, so many of them on social media waxed lyrical and made a point to their manager on what they want to see happen with him very soon.
Here’s the best of the reaction on social media from the jubilant Blues faithful.
@COYB_Jake tweeted: ‘Great well it’s not a competition but we will be more than happy when Gallagher is apart of that midfield rotation next season.
@FunomPraiz reckons: ‘Coming back home next season.’
@Darren_Lav89 said: ‘He’s been sensational! I can’t wait to see him play in a Chelsea shirt next season!’
@Akintayosa labelled Gallagher: ‘New Frank Lampard.’
@Ntefuni13 delivered his verdict: ‘Yea the real deal.’