Chelsea have reportedly asked Spezia to play Ethan Ampadu as a centre-back this season with a view to his future at Stamford Bridge.
Ampadu joined Chelsea at the age of 16 from Exeter but has made just 12 senior appearances for the Blues, spending the last three seasons out on loan.
He was handed a handful of minutes in 2019-20 at RB Leipzig, before playing significant roles for Sheffield United in the Premier League and then for Venezia in Serie A last season.
He’s played in a number of positions in that time with his versatility a conveted attribute, but was used predominantly as a defensive midfielder last term.
Chelsea have now reportedly asked Luca Gotti to play the 21-year-old at centre-back, as they believe a good loan could see him return and play in that role for them next season.
The Spezia manager revealed: “Chelsea asked me to play Ethan Ampadu as centre-back. They asked for it as they see Ampadu returning there in one year and play as centre-back in the future.
“We’ll discuss about it again,” Gotti added.
After Chelsea’s pre-season victory over Club America, in which Ampadu impressed in a back three, Thomas Tuchel explained why he believes the Wales international thrived in that position.
Tuchel said: “Ethan did very well, I think.
“The position is a good position for him in the middle of the back three. He played a lot of vertical passes and did not play left to right only.
“He played through the lines with his passes and dribbles. So he was very active, and it was a good match for him. He is training well.”
It was thought at the time that given both Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen had left on free transfers that Ampadu could play a role under Tuchel this season.
But the arrival of Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli and Leicester’s Wesley Fofana would likely have seen Ampadu barely feature, with fellow centre-backs Trevoh Chalobah and Thiago Silva also vying for a starting place.
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