Explained: Why Chelsea are handing out very long-term contracts to new signings like Mudryk and Badiashile
- Chelsea confirm Mudryk signing
- Follows Badiashile to Stamford Bridge
- Both sign 7+ year contracts at club
WHAT HAPPENED? Mykhailo Mudryk was officially presented as a Chelsea player at Stamford Bridge as Graham Potter's side beat Crystal Palace at the weekend, bringing to an end a battle between themselves and Arsenal for his signature. He signed a staggering eight-and-a-half year deal, while Benoit Badiashile - who arrived earlier in the transfer window from Monaco - penned a similar seven-and-a-half year contract with Chelsea, which has naturally raised eyebrows due to how unusually long the contracts are.
WHY HAVE THEY BEEN GIVEN THE DEALS? Chelsea have splashed more than £400 million on players since Todd Boehly's consortium purchased the club. That lofty sum has been spent on a blend of experienced players and younger talents for the future.
Football finance expert Kieran Maguire explained to Sky Sports: "What Chelsea have decided to do is to spread the cost of the players by signing them on very long contracts. So, by signing Mudryk on an eight-and-a-half-year contract, the way it is dealt with for accounting and FFP purposes is you take that £88m cost and you divide that over eight-and-a-half-years, and it works out as just over £10m-a-year.
"That appears to be the Chelsea strategy that they have employed over the last couple of windows."
IN THREE PHOTOS:
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Seeing such long-term contracts handed out is highly unusual, with most sides typically offering a maximum of five years, which often includes the option of triggering an extension. The Blues have signed 15 new players since Boehly came into the club, with nine of those being 22 or under. It's made the decision to sign the likes of Raheem Sterling, Kalidou Koulibaly and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang appear questionable, but with Potter bogged down by an injury crisis within his squad - and a suspension to new boy Joao Felix - experience and youth will undoubtedly both play a part.
WHAT NEXT FOR CHELSEA? Providing they give him sufficient time, Potter will begin to help take the Blues into a new, more youthful direction that reflects the stellar work he did as manager of Brighton.