It’s been a busy Christmas and New Year period for the Loan Army, but we’ve been on top of all the goings-on in an action-packed first Loan Report of 2017.
There’ve been no shortage of goals since we were last with you, and most of them have come courtesy of Tammy Abraham. On Boxing Day he scored an equaliser for Bristol City away to Wolves only to end up on the losing side (a recurring theme), and did the same three days later away to Ipswich Town:
On Monday, he scored his first brace since mid-September with a goal either side of half time to give City a 2-0 lead at home to Reading, extending his tally to seventeen for the season. Unfortunately, the Royals mounted a late comeback to win 3-2, consigning them to a seventh straight defeat.
It was also a very enjoyable Boxing Day for Kasey Palmer, who grabbed his fourth of the season in a home win against Nottingham Forest before celebrating by acknowledging a pending newcomer to the Palmer family.
He then got an hour on New Year’s Eve against Blackburn before then being rested away to Wigan on Monday, remaining an unused substitute in their 1-0 win. Still, it’s been quite a season so far for the gifted playmaker, as Huddersfield’s official club accounts noted:
Lucas Piazon rang in the New Year with his fourth of the campaign to give Fulham the lead against promotion-chasing Brighton, but it was a lead they were unable to hold onto. Tomas Kalas missed the Cottagers’ entire festive programme through injury.
Nathan Aké was forced to miss Bournemouth’s Boxing Day trip to Chelsea through loanee eligibility rules, but he was back at the heart of the Cherries’ defence for their trip to Swansea on New Year’s Eve, where they recorded a very handsome 3-0 win. They now host Arsenal on Tuesday.
Patrick Bamford actually saw three minutes of playing time away to Manchester City on Monday but, having played less than 300 minutes of football throughout the entirety of 2016, he is likely to be looking for alternative arrangements now that the transfer window is officially open.
Christian Atsu was an ineffective substitute as Newcastle were beaten at home by Sheffield Wednesday on Boxing Day but played a useful 90 minutes next up in a 3-1 win over Nottingham Forest. Having been dropped back to the bench on Monday, he played the last five minutes of a 1-0 defeat to Blackburn and now departs the Magpies to join up with Ghana’s squad ahead of the African Cup of Nations; a competition he was named the Best Player at in 2015.
Izzy Brown started all three of Rotherham’s matches since Christmas, with a win and two defeats leaving them still well adrift at the bottom of the Championship, although his individual performances have at least been a highlight.
In League One, Charlie Colkett played no part in Bristol Rovers’ matches against either Coventry, Wimbledon or Charlton, remaining an unused substitute on each occasion. Against Charlton, he was in good company, as one of the newest members of the loan army spent the duration of the afternoon on the home bench. Jay Dasilva has joined the Addicks until the end of the season but, having only trained with the club for a few days, he’ll have to wait to make his professional debut.
It’s been a busy week down in League Two, where Jordan Houghton and Jamal Blackman have each extended their stays until the end of the season having initially only penned half-season arrangements with Doncaster Rovers and Wycombe Wanderers respectively.
Houghton has been a stalwart in Rovers’ midfield and didn’t miss a second over the busy last seven days, helping Darren Ferguson’s side to wins over Notts County and Stevenage and a draw at Mansfield to lift them seven points clear of fourth place. Blackman, however, has been sidelined with a minor knock that isn’t expected to last beyond Wycombe’s next match.
Alex Kiwomya’s stay at Crewe is set to expire this coming Sunday and all signs point towards an extension being announced in the coming days. He played all but nine minutes of their trio of outings since the last update, but the Alex picked up just two points from that run and are marooned in mid-table obscurity.
Mitchell Beeney and Alex Davey will likely return to Chelsea from Crawley when their loans end on Tuesday, with neither impacting Dermot Drummy’s plans any more.
Outside the Football League, Dion Conroy is playing very well for Aldershot – where he will stay for the rest of the season – and played his part in home and away wins over Woking to help Gary Waddock’s side into the playoff places. Nathan Baxter, however, hasn’t featured for Met Police since before Christmas and may well be moving onto bigger challenges when his loan ends in just under a fortnight.
Comings and Goings
In addition to Dasilva’s switch to Charlton, Marco van Ginkel has re-joined PSV Eindhoven after a successful four-month spell there last season. He helped them win the Eredivisie then and might well have inked a permanent deal in the summer were it not for injury, and despite extending his Chelsea contract by a year this week, this latest move could well signal an end to his ties to Stamford Bridge.
Joao Rodriguez has officially left Santa Fe in Colombia but has been extensively linked with another top-flight side in his homeland in the form of Cortulúa, whilst Wallace is expected to leave Gremio before the Brazilian season begins again at the end of January. Charly Musonda and Kenedy returned to Chelsea some weeks ago and are training with the first team squad whilst manager Antonio Conte appraises their suitability for sticking around between now and May.
Everyone else is now on a winter break, with some longer than others. La Liga, for example, returns to action this coming weekend, but the Bundesliga isn’t back until January 20th. A healthy dose of loanees will be away on warm-weather training camps in the meantime.