Speaking to Gazetta dello Sport, the former Chelsea full-back revealed why he left west London. Emerson was told by his Italian manager Roberto Mancini that he needs to play regular first-team football to keep his place in the national team. Emerson said he was happy with Lyon's project, after joining them on an initial loan deal. Emerson said:
“I decided to leave Chelsea as I had no space. Roberto Mancini told me: you need to play, you’ve to be a starter. OL proposed an interesting project and I accepted in two or three days. I’m really happy with my choice."
Emerson Palmeiri first joined Chelsea back in January 2018 for a fee of around €20 million. Despite penning a four-and-a-half-year deal, Emerson was never seen as a first-choice left-back and played second fiddle to Marcos Alonso. However, the 27-year-old full-back fell further down the pecking order when Chelsea signed Ben Chilwell from Leicester City last summer.
As things stand, Emerson Palmeiri is having some sort of career renaissance at Lyon. The Italian international has so far played 6 six for the Ligue 1 outfit and has already scored a goal for his new side.
Chelsea have had a rock-solid start to their new campaign
Under the leadership of Thomas Tuchel, Chelsea have always been a strong defensive unit and that has continued into the new season as well.
Chelsea are currently sitting at the top of the Premier League charts, level on points and goal difference with Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool. In five Premier League games so far, the Blues have only conceded once, which came against Liverpool at Anfield.
However, the strongest test for Chelsea's defense will come this weekend. They take on Manchester City in a repeat of last season's Champions League final.
Despite their strong back-line, Chelsea are looking to sign yet another defender in the upcoming transfer window. The European champions failed to secure the services of Sevilla centre-back Jules Kounde in the summer and are expected to make another bid for the French defender in the January transfer window.