A handful of Chelsea youngsters made debuts for their new clubs this past week but we’re still awaiting notable impacts from many as we take another look at how the loan boys are getting on.
Whilst Gael Kakuta sat on Bolton’s substitutes bench for the second week in a row, Patrick van Aanholt made his Wigan bow and slotted straight into a typical attacking left-back role, making an impact at both ends of the pitch.
In the midweek Carling Cup tie against Crystal Palace, he was a rare bright spark in an otherwise terrible team performance and came close to a debut goal when his fiercely-struck shot came crashing back off the crossbar.
He followed that with another strong outing in his first ever Premier League start, as whilst the Latics fell to a 3-1 defeat away to Everton, the Dutch Under-21 international got forwards well, twice going close to scoring, and held his own in defence.
Kakuta, meanwhile, did get a run-out for Bolton’s reserves in a midweek 3-3 draw against Arsenal, and with Owen Coyle’s team struggling for form must be hoping to get his chance sooner rather than later.
In the Championship, Ben Gordon was absent from Peterborough’s 2-0 win over Burnley as an unfortunate casualty of being lost in the numbers shuffle. Whereas Football League clubs could previously name seven substitutes, they may now only name five and as such Ben was left out of the matchday squad.
Milan Lalkovic was a second-half substitute for Doncaster Rovers as the basement-dwellers continued to struggle, going down 2-0 at Reading.
The Slovakian has done well in spells in his month at the Keepmoat Stadium but is now likely to return to Stamford Bridge until the turn of the year.
Sam Walker has been perhaps Chelsea’s most successful loanee of the season to date and the Northampton Town goalkeeper followed up last weekend’s third clean sheet of the campaign with a fourth in midweek, shutting out Wimbledon in a 3-0 win.
Gary Johnson’s side lost 3-1 to Macclesfield at the weekend but Walker was in good form and has been one of the Cobblers’ best players to date.
In Germany, Jeffrey Bruma scored his first goal for Hamburg with a free kick in a midweek stroll against amateur side Concordia but was an unused substitute for their 0-1 Bundesliga defeat at home to Borussia Monchengladbach on Saturday, a result which leaves the club rooted to the bottom of the table.
Better news from the Netherlands, however, as Ulises Dávila and Tomas Kalas both made their Vitesse Arnhem debuts in an emphatic 5-0 rout of Roda JC on Saturday night.
Mexican winger Dávila completed an hour and looked the part even if he wasn’t directly involved in much, but Kalas had an oustanding game in defence, displaying maturity and athleticism, and was named the player of the round by some national media.
He went off with a slight knock ten minutes from time but will take heart from a very impressive start.
In Spain, Thibaut Courtois successfully shut out Celtic in Europa League action in Atlético Madrid’s 2-0 midweek win, and had a very comfortable 4-0 weekend victory over Racing Santander. With four clean sheets in five matches, it’s been a strong start for the young Belgian.
Finally, to the Czech Republic, where Matej Delac will play for Dynamo Ceske Budejovice this season. The Croatian teenager was an unused sub on Saturday for a 2-0 defeat to FC Slovacko, but with the club bottom of the table and struggling defensively, he should see plenty of playing time.
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