Chelsea: What’s the strategy behind their new signings?

  • The club confirm the arrival of Júlia Bartel and Sandy Baltimore
  • Lucy Bronze is set to pen a two-year deal
  • Sonia Bompastor takes over from Emma Hayes as head coach
Júlia Bartel and Sandy Baltimore have both joined Chelsea
Júlia Bartel and Sandy Baltimore have both joined Chelsea / Juan Luis Diaz/Quality Sport Images/Franco Arland/Getty Images

Chelsea are making some serious moves this summer transfer window, reinforcing new boss Sonia Bompastor’s desire to build upon the legacy left by Emma Hayes. 

The club confirmed they’d made their first signing last week, in 20-year-old Julia Bartel from Barcelona. The deal will see the Spanish native remain at the club until the summer of 2027, with the option to extend by one year.

The midfielder has been tipped as one of the most exciting, emerging talents in the women’s game. She spent her early years rising through the ranks at Barcelona’s academy, developing her technical ability. Chelsea fans will be happy to hear that Bartel has plenty of domestic and international experience under her belt too, something she’ll need when playing in such high-pressure tournaments.

Following weeks of speculation, the club have also now confirmed the arrival of forward Sandy Baltimore from Paris-Saint Germain. The French international, who made nearly 200 appearances for her previous side, is versatile and like Bartel, has been recognised for her pace and goal scoring ability. At just 24 years old, it’s clear that Bompastor is wanting to inject some youth into her squad ahead of next season.

Lucy Bronze is set to join Chelsea from Barcelona
Lucy Bronze is set to join Chelsea from Barcelona / Quality Sport Images/GettyImages

The two signings align with the news that Lioness legend Lucy Bronze is reportedly very close to penning a two-year deal with Chelsea. Following her departure from Barcelona earlier this month, sources have told 90min that Bompastor was the driving force behind the move.

It’s understood that despite being offered a contract extension at Barcelona, Bronze wasn’t guaranteed a spot in the starting squad due to increasing competition from Ona Batlle. 

Therefore, it’s no surprise that Chelsea were the most attractive candidate, despite interest from the NWSL, giving her the chance for maximum game time, but also the opportunity to continue playing in front of sold out crowds.

Although not many would turn down the opportunity to sign Bronze, some have questioned where she is likely to fit into the current Chelsea squad, who already have Eve Perisset playing in Bronze’s preferred position at right-back. However, 90min understands Bompastor has an intention to move her into a midfield position, as well as right-back once she joins the club, helping to expand the technical skillset of the already established player.

Sonia Bompastor takes over as head coach from Emma Hayes
Sonia Bompastor takes over as head coach from Emma Hayes / Catherine Ivill - AMA/GettyImages

The move will see the 32-year-old make a return to the Women’s Super League after leaving Manchester City for the second time to join Barcelona in 2022. Bronze will be heading to Stamford Bridge dripping in silverware, after winning multiple league titles at Liverpool, City, Lyon and Barcelona, most recently playing an instrumental role in helping the Catalin side secure the treble.

Bompastor is certainly making a play for high-profile and emerging talent, in a bid to lead the club to new heights. There's no doubt that she has some very big shoes to fill, but it's clear her brave and bold signings since taking over the helm are a sign that she's ready for what's to come, and other clubs should be very wary.