Chelsea legend Frank Lampard has admitted that he would have liked Watford new boy Nathaniel Chalobah to stay with the Blues this summer, praising the youngster's ability.
Chalobah came close to becoming another player caught up in the Chelsea loan system - where many high profile youngsters have fallen victim to lack of game time, and ultimately, having their potential ousted. But this summer saw the England U21 international move to Watford in a £5m deal, and Lampard says he's impressed with the midfielder:
"I don't know the politics of that but I like Chalobah,” Lampard told Goal.
“I like the way he has come through because I have seen him come through as a school boy and watched his progress on loan.
“He improved while away, particularly when he went abroad [to Napoli]. I think that really improved him as a player and a person.
The transfer included a buy-back clause in Chalobah's contract with the Hornets, and Lampard seems to be a fan of the idea - admitting that it could come in useful.
"I don't know the ins and outs of why he left but there's certainly that market of bringing these youngsters through to sell and get money in the short term and to bring them back. We see it happening particularly at Chelsea.
"I would have liked him to stay but from his point of view. I want to see him getting game time because he is old enough now. He should be playing every week and I am sure he will be doing that at Watford.”
Chelsea's squad depth has come into question this summer, and with a mass exodus of young players leaving the club, many have suggested that such a decision could come back to haunt them.