Chelsea winger Gael Kakuta will join Italian club Lazio on loan for the remainder of the 2013-14 season, according to the club's official website.
The deal was completed on Friday, Jan. 31, the final day of the winter transfer window, and marks Kakuta's fifth loan experience since arriving at Chelsea back in 2007.
Gael Kakuta is like a shirt that Chelsea know they'll never wear out of the house but still can't bring themselves to properly get rid of.— Simon Banoub (@Banouby) January 31, 2014
The 22-year-old French winger has spent the past season-and-a-half on loan with Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem, recording three goals and six assists since 2012.
Lazio currently occupy 10th place in the Serie A table through 21 matches and are well off the championship pace. Acquiring Kakuta won't improve the club's chances of making a run, but it will provide the squad with an offensive spark while at the same time allowing the youngster to continue his development.
Lazio sporting director Igli Tare is confident that Kakuta will impress during his time in Italy, per Football Italia: "Is the market over for us? Yes, I think so. We are only in for Kakuta now. I think you’ll soon see what a strong lad he is."
Despite the fact that Chelsea are chasing a Premier League title, they can afford to be without a player who has been away for the past three seasons.
Kakuta signed with the Blues as a teenager seven years ago but has made just 16 total appearances for the club since, spending the majority of his time on various loans to other clubs across Europe. In addition to Vitesse, Kakuta has made appearances for Fulham, Bolton Wanderers and French club Dijon, where he had his best run, recording five goals and two assists in 14 appearances in 2011-12.
Kakuta has not only starred at the club level but has made a plethora of appearances for the French national team as well, playing on a handful of youth squads—he most recently featured for the Under-21 team.
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