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Chelsea midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko is back at Stamford Bridge after spending last season on loan at AC Milan.
Bakayoko joined Chelsea for £40m in 2017 from Monaco but struggled for form in his first season at Stamford Bridge. He was heavily criticised by Chelsea fans for his poor performances in his first season as he struggled to adapt to English football.
However, after struggling to settle in at AC Milan, Bakayoko ended up hitting top form and became a key player for Gennaro Gattuso’s side.
Back in January, Bakayoko was in top form as he helped Milan advance to the Coppa Italia semi-finals after beating Napoli 2-0 at the San Siro.
Speaking after the game, Gattuso was full of praise for the ex-Monaco man and outlined how the player has improved drastically.
“I think he’s a typical deep-lying midfielder in modern football,” he told Rai Sport (via Football Italia).
“He can turn the moves from defensive to attacking, he takes men on and always gets past them.
“He has learned so much about transitions, as at the start he got it wrong most of the time, but today he can do diagonal runs and close off the passing channels.”
Although there’s fierce competition in Chelsea’s midfield, Bakayoko could prove to be a key player for Frank Lampard’s side, and the 24-year-old has all the attributes needed to succeed in Lampard’s team.
Already, Bakayoko is attracting interest from top European sides. According to reports, Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has identified Bakayoko as a possible replacement for Paul Pogba who could leave Old Trafford for Real Madrid this summer.
French champions Paris Saint-Germain are also interested in a move for Bakayoko. Manchester United and PSG face competition from Arsenal, with Unai Emery said to be an admirer of the midfielder and considering handing him another chance in the Premier League.
Bakayoko is far from being a fan’s favourite at Stamford Bridge, but Chelsea fans must put aside their differences and give him a chance to prove himself at the club next season.