Why Chelsea should snap up Dejan Tetek with an eye on the future
According to the Daily Mail, Chelsea are keeping close tabs on Reading starlet Dejan Tetek with a view to a potential swoop in the January transfer window. As per the report, the highly-rated midfielder has also attracted interest from London rivals Arsenal.
Tetek, who rose through the youth ranks of Reading, made his first-team debut as a substitute in a 1-0 EFL Cup defeat to Luton Town back in September. A month later, manager Veljko Paunovic handed the 18-year-old his league debut for the Royals in a 1-0 home win over Watford in the Championship.
The England U-18 international, who also holds Serbian citizenship, has only made a couple of senior competitive appearances for Reading. Despite having not started a single game so far, Tetek has seemingly done enough to put some of the biggest clubs across the nation on red alert with his potential.
Tetek made his debut in the U-18 Premier League for Reading during the 2017-18 season before establishing himself as a key player at that level in the following campaign.
The central midfielder eventually made the step-up to the Royals’ U-23 ranks in the Premier League 2 Division 2 last term. He has only made a handful of appearances for the U-23s this term but is already knocking on the first-team door at the Madejski Stadium.
Meanwhile, Roman Abramovich’s spending spree in the summer saw Chelsea bolster their squad with some top-quality players like Ben Chilwell, Kai Havertz, Timo Werner and Edouard Mendy. Others like Thiago Silva and Malang Sarr also joined the ranks on free transfers as Frank Lampard sent out a strong statement of intent with his recruitment.
The arrival of several world-class stars at Stamford Bridge has, however, overshadowed the club’s efforts to bring reinforcements at the youth and reserve level. Chelsea snapped up some top young prospects in the form of Edwin Andersson, Bryan Fiabema and Jimi Tauriainen last year and all those players have been successfully integrated into the U-18 set-up.
Chelsea beating off competition in the race to sign Dejan Tetek would represent yet another exciting addition to the existing pool of up and coming talents at Stamford Bridge.
The 18-year-old is hardly the finished article and has just started to make his first strides in professional football at Reading. However, he definitely ticks the box as a good long-term investment for the Blues.
Chelsea have every reason to trust the quality of Reading’s latest generation of young talents. The likes of Michael Olise and Omar Richards have gone from relatively unknown starlets to being amongst the most talked-about youngsters in the Championship. Tetek hasn’t quite made the same impact just yet but has shown signs of promise, nevertheless.
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Lampard has shown that he’s not afraid to hand the youngsters a chance to impress. The likes of Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Reece James have all enjoyed varying degrees of success under the club legend. Tetek, to that end, could also get a fair crack of the whip in the coming years if he continues his development down the right path.