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Tiemoue Bakayoko, Chelsea Agree to 5-Year Contract After Transfer from Monaco

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistJuly 15, 2017

MONACO, MONACO - MAY 3: Tiemoue Bakayoko of Monaco in action during the UEFA Champions League semi final first leg match between AS Monaco and Juventus Turin at Stade Louis II on May 3, 2017 in Monaco, Monaco. (Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images)
Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

Chelsea announced the signing of AS Monaco defensive midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko on Saturday, with the Frenchman penning a five-year deal at Stamford Bridge.

Bakayoko arrived from Stade Louis II after three seasons with Monaco, and the 22-year-old—who will wear the No. 14 in west London—said:

"I am very happy to be here and to join this great team. I have grown up watching Chelsea. Signing was the natural thing for me because it is a club I loved very much in my childhood.

"I am now looking forward to evolving under this fantastic coach and alongside so many great team-mates."

Despite his age, Bakayoko has already established himself as an accomplished player.

He played a key role in Leonardo Jardim's impressive young Monaco side that won Ligue 1 in 2016-17 and made the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League.

As well as boasting all the traditional qualities of a solid central player—physicality, strength in the tackle, intelligence—Bakayoko is also more than capable advancing forward on the ball, per WhoScored.com:

WhoScored.com @WhoScored

Tiemoué Bakayoko: Statistically calculated WhoScored strengths, weaknesses and style of play https://t.co/yqC2xHHHpl

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Chelsea must be convinced by his talent and the promise he has shown in Ligue 1 with Monaco over the last few seasons, during which he has developed from a fringe player to a first-team regular.

At Stamford Bridge, Bakayoko will have plenty to prove, especially since he will be playing in an unfamiliar league.

He will also have to compete for first-team places with the likes of Nemanja Matic, Cesc Fabregas and 2016-17 PFA Player of the Year N'Golo Kante.

Bakayoko, however, has so far in his career risen to challenges effectively, and new manager Antonio Conte has a major talent on his hands who could become a superstar if well nurtured.

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