John Terry: His my perfect replacement and can save Chelsea upto £70m as contract talks progress

Levi Colwill got the chance to play some football. Levi Colwill looked very good.

It’s a shame that the extent of his outings really has been condensed to that one sentence though. The 19-year-old has started twice on-loan at Brighton and both have come in the Carabao Cup. The only saving grace here is that at least he has now played more minutes for his club than he has for England Under-21s.

That’s not saying much, but it’s at least proof for anyone that had forgotten or doubted how good Colwill is. With a lack of competitive football in his legs he went away to the Emirates Stadium and played against an Arsenal team with Eddie Nketiah, £40m Fabio Vieira and the in-form Reiss Nelson.

Not only did Colwill help to dump the Gunners out of the cup, something that will please his parent club’s fans very much, he was typically Colwill in doing so.

He had 94 touches, 12 clearances, nine won duels, three tackles, seven recoveries and wasn’t dribbled past. The quality of his passing from defence was eye-catching and it was an all-round brilliant performance. So much so that Brighton fans took to Twitter to praise him with one saying: “From a Brighton fan he was world class tonight.”

Graham Potter signed Colwill on the south coast in the summer before moving to Stamford Bridge and has a big call to make over whether the Blues recall him in January and either look for another loan or try to bed him into the squad.

Neither of these things is unlikely. His performance in a domestic cup is unlikely to truly elevate him in Roberto De Zerbi’s eyes, especially not with Brighton still looking slick, but it does remind people that he is one of the most promising defenders on the books at Cobham. Considering Trevoh Chalobah has played every single minute across 10 matches since coming on as a substitute against AC Milan and that Marc Cucurella looks out of place in a back three, Colwill, in another universe, would have gained a reasonable amount of gametime had he stayed.

The issue won’t go away into next summer either, no matter what happens in January. Silva is 38 and will be coming off the back of the World Cup, Cesar Azpilicueta looks physically drained without cover and Wesley Fofana will be returning from injury again.

Chelsea may well return to the transfer market for another defender, Josko Gvardiol has been linked and is perhaps the most likely name. Over the summer it was Inter Milan’s Slovakian centre-back Milan Skriniar that attracted Thomas Tuchel. He is out of contract next summer and could realistically be available on a cut-price deal in January, however, he has dampened reports of leaving.

The Milan CEO Giuseppe Marotta said, via transfer guru Fabrizio Romano: “I’m really confident and optimistic to reach an agreement with Skriniar over new long term contract. We’ll be in contact with his agents and we hope to get it sealed in the next few weeks.”

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