Chelsea won’t have to worry about financial constraints this January as it looks to improve its squad.
According to the Telegraph, Chelsea will have as much as $200 million to spend, after the team saved on not spending last summer during its 2019 summer transfer ban. The report states Chelsea has its sights on a number of players, including Borussia Dortmund’s Jaden Sancho and RB Leipzig’s Timo Werner, though it’s doubtful that both teams, also competing in the UEFA Champions League, will let them leave in January.
However, the report states that Chelsea believes Bayer Leverkusen’s Leon Bailey and Villarreal’s Samuel Chukwueze could be available to sign. Bailey has four goals and three assists with Leverkusen this year, and Chukwueze has six goals and two assists for Villarreal, all in multiple competitions.
Bayer Leverkusen got its young speedster back at the right time.
Leon Bailey’s cut through Bayern Munich on Saturday, scoring twice in 63 minutes for a picture perfect return from a two-match red card suspension.
Both goals showed his knack for using the right angles to execute runs with his blazing speed, as the 22-year-old Jamaican scored his 20th and 21st career Bundesliga goals to lift Bayer to within six points of first place Borussia Monchengladbach via a 2-1 win at the Allianz Arena.
It looks like an open league. And Bailey wants to see his team finish higher than its fourth place standing of the 2018/19 season.
“I see our team being at the highest level,” Bailey tells ProSoccerTalk three days after his big performance in Munich. “We have, of all the teams right now, the best chance to be in the Top Three this year.
“The Bundesliga level is high right now and the points are very close, and even the teams that are behind are doing their best to beat teams ahead of them which makes it more complicated but it’s a very intense league and I’m happy to be a part of it.”
It’s been a wild ride for Bailey, who started his career with Genk in Belgium, amassing 15 goals and 21 assists in 77 matches.
He’s continued to deliver following a move to Germany, posting 21 and 12 in 92 appearances. That’s seen him linked with a lot of big clubs, including Bayern Munich and Manchester City.
And at long last he’s debuted for Jamaica, earning six caps since the start of the Gold Cup in June.
Bailey assisted against the USMNT in the Reggae Boyz’s 3-1 semifinal loss, and got his first goal in a September win over Antigua and Barbuda in the CONCACAF Nations League.
“It made me learn a lot and I’m grateful that I can actually help my country, be there for them right now, and hopefully we can make it to a World Cup,” he said.
Jamaica’s the fourth ranked team in CONCACAF and will be contesting the Hex in a bid to land its first World Cup bid since 1998, its only appearance in the tournament.
“It would mean everything to me, of course for the country,” Bailey said. “Right now we have a good team, Since I joined the team a lot of English players came and I think we have a good possibility to make it.”
That, most likely, would mean getting the best of Gregg Berhalter’s USMNT.
Bailey says he sees some comparisons between what Bayer did against Bayern and what the Reggae Boyz will need to do to the Yanks.
“They have a lot of quality players and they have a system that reminds me a little bit of how Bayern Munich plays, but we can defeat them if we put our minds to it like we did against Bayern Munich.”
RB Leipzig has seized first place on the table ahead of Sunday’s match between Gladbach and Freiburg, but Bayern Munich failed to take advantage of its chance with a home loss courtesy of a Leon Bailey double.
That’s par for the course of this woolly Bundesliga season. Here’s what you missed.
Paderborn 2-3 RB Leipzig
The new table leaders — at least for a day — scored twice in the first four minutes and added a third in the 26th to account for a 3-0 advantage that was soured a bit in the second half. Timo Werner had a goal and an assist for Leipzig, with Patrik Schick and Marcel Sabitzer also finding the back of the net.
Bayern Munich 1-2 Bayer Leverkusen
A share of first place eluded the Allianz Arena set, as Jamaican striker Leon Bailey sandwiched a pair of goals around Thomas Muller’s 34th minute marker for the hosts. An 81st minute red card to Jonathan Tah opened the door to no avail despite nearly 75 percent of the ball and 21 shots. Bayern will finish the weekend at least three points back of the throne room.
Jurgen Klinsmann’s home debut came close to a stirring result. BVB had taken a 2-0 lead after 17 minutes through goals from Jadon Sancho and Thorgan Hazard, but Vladimir Danda scored in the 34th for the hosts and Mats Hummels’ poor week continued with a 45th minute yellow card. But a 13-7 shot advantage could not produce a second goal as Hertha fell into 16th.
Hoffenheim 1-1 Fortuna Dusseldorf
The visitors came back for a point thanks in part to their American duo, as Alfredo Morales assisted on captain Rouwen Hennings‘ 87th minute equalizer and Zach Steffen made five saves and was a tidy 88 percent passer to move Fortuna a point clear of the Bottom Three.
Elsewhere Schalke 2-1 Union Berlin — Friday
Koln 1-1 Augsburg
Borussia Monchengladbach v. Freiburg — 9:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Wolfsburg v. Werder Bremen — Noon ET Sunday
Mainz v. Eintracht Frankfurt — 2:30 p.m. ET Sunday
Leon Goretzka’s goal before halftime, his fourth in three matches, was not the start of something good. Leon Bailey scored his first goal in five months to kickstart a three-goal second half that sent Bayern to its third away loss of the season. Kevin Volland and Lucas Alario scored the other Bayer goals.
The Bailey goal was magnificent.
Leon Bailey and Leverkusen came back from 0-1 down to beat Bayern 3-1.
Alexander Nübel’s 59th minute red card put the hosts under the sword, but Christoph Kramer’s winner didn’t arrive until the 85th minute. Gladbach added another in stoppage time through Florian Neuhaus, and leaps over Bayern on goal differential for second on the table.
Eintracht Frankfurt 1-1 Borussia Dortmund
Marco Reus’ early goal was his 13th of the season, putting the leaders ahead in the 22nd minute, but fellow Golden Boot chaser Luka Jovic scored his 14th about a quarter-hour later to earn a point for still Top Four-chasing Eintracht.