“It’s difficult for the manager to let everyone play” - Chelsea star explains why he secured January loan move

Brentford FC v Chelsea FC - Premier League
Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino.

Chelsea defender Ian Maatsen has stated that wanting regular time on the pitch was the reason behind his loan move in January.

Maatsen was part of the Blues' first-team squad for the first half of the 2023-24 campaign. However, he made just 12 Premier League appearances (one start), despite first-choice left-back Ben Chilwell being injured from September to January.

The Englishman eventually secured a loan move until the end of the season to Borussia Dortmund during the winter transfer window. Maatsen has now explained the rationale behind the move and told The Guardian (as quoted by @FabrizioRomano on X):

“My plan was to stay at Chelsea but with the pressure they are under it is sometimes difficult for a manager to let everyone play…
“I understand that on manager’s point of view. But I want to play football.”

Maatsen enjoyed a great start to his time at Dortmund, providing an assist in his second Bundesliga match. He won the league's Rookie of the Month award for January after helping his side to wins over Darmstadt, Koln and VfL Bochum during the month.

Overall, the 22-year-old has already started nine Bundesliga matches, recording a goal and two assists. Maatsen also started and completed the first leg of Dortmund's UEFA Champions League Round-of-16 encounter against PSV Eindhoven, which ended in a 1-1 draw.


Ian Maatsen has spent most of his Chelsea career out on loan

Ian Maatsen joined Chelsea's youth team in 2018 after stints with Feyenoord, Sparta and PSV. He rose through the ranks, transitioning from the U18s to the U23s in 2019.

In the summer of 2020, he was loaned out to Charlton Athletic. Maatsen played 35 times for Charlton across the 2020-21 season, recording a goal and three assists. The following summer, he was sent on another season-long loan, this time to Coventry City, where he scored thrice in 42 matches across competitions.

Maatsen then joined Burnley on loan for the 2022-23 season. He registered four goals and six assists in 42 matches across competitions, helping the Clarets secure promotion back to the Premier League.

The defender returned to Chelsea last summer. Burnley reportedly tried to bring him back on another loan deal but with a buy option for their first campaign back in the top flight, but the defender rejected the move (via Metro).

Quick Links

Edited by Anantaajith Raghuraman
App download animated image Get the free App now