Patrick van Aanholt Urges Chelsea's Callum Hudson-Odoi to 'Follow His Heart'

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistFebruary 11, 2019

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 02: Callum Hudson-Odoi of Chelsea during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Huddersfield Town at Stamford Bridge on February 02, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Ben Early/Getty Images)
Ben Early/Getty Images

Former Chelsea player Patrick van Aanholt has said Callum Hudson-Odoi should "follow his heart" when deciding between the Blues and a move to Bayern Munich. 

Bayern attempted to sign the winger in January and could resume their pursuit of him again in the summer.

Crystal Palace left-back Van Aanholt, who spent seven years as a Chelsea player before leaving for Sunderland in 2014 having made just eight senior appearances for the Blues, appeared on Goals on Sunday and said (h/t Goal's Chris Burton):

"He's playing games, he's playing loads of games. I don't know what's going on in his head or what people are telling him, so I can't decide for him.

"But the other thing I'd say is he's just got to follow his heart and see what his heart says and where it leads to.

"I think the better you play, the better the money will be and the money will come eventually if you keep playing.

"For him it's good to play first-team football because he's a fantastic player. You can see now, it's like he's been there for years."

Van Aanholt arrived at Stamford Bridge at 17, but spent most of his time at the club on loan with five different clubs, including Newcastle United, Leicester City and Vitesse Arnhem.

Hudson-Odoi, 18, has impressed despite having relatively few opportunities this season, including a fine goal in Chelsea's 3-0 FA Cup win over Sheffield Wednesday last month:

Aside from an hour in the Community Shield, Hudson-Odoi had been restricted to UEFA Europa League appearances prior to making his first Premier League outing of the season on Boxing Day against Watford.

He has made a further five appearances in all competitions in 2019 amid interest from Germany, but he is still yet to start a match in England's top flight.

On Sunday, he was left out of Chelsea's squad entirely in their trip to Manchester City.

Alex Goldberg of the CalcioLand Podcast felt his absence was telling:

His exclusion spared him the humiliation of being on the receiving end of a 6-0 thrashing like his team-mates, but Metro's Matthew Nash believes it will only make him consider his future at the club:

The youngster's game time has improved somewhat in recent weeks, and Bayern's interest is likely no coincidence.

Chelsea resume UEFA Europa League duties against Malmo on Thursday, so that should present further opportunities for him to play, but it seems he's still yet to win the trust of manager Maurizio Sarri.

If he's still struggling for regular game time come the end of the season, a move to Bayern—where they need to replace the ageing Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery—would seem better for his development than remaining at Chelsea.

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