Chelsea are confident that January signing Andrey Santos will be handed a work permit to play in the Premier League.
The Blues fought off competition from a number of Europe’s elite sides to sign 18-year-old Santos, who signed his contract in England before flying back to South America for the continent’s Under-20 Championships.
Under new work permit rules, Santos did not initially qualify for a permit as the league he was coming from, the Brazilian second tier, was not deemed strong enough.
However, his stand-out performances at the tournament, in which he has five goals and an assist in six games, are expected to be enough to earn him a permit after an appeal.
If signings fail to acquire an initial permit, clubs are free to present their case to the FA Exceptions Panel and can argue that the player in question is an exciting-enough talent who would raise the value of the competition.
Sources have confirmed that Chelsea are confident Santos’ latest performances will work in his favour and land him a work permit for his return to England.
Chelsea sold Jorginho on the final day of the transfer window and have been left short in midfield by injuries, but the hope is that Santos will be able to play a role in Graham Potter’s first team upon his return.
In further positive news for Chelsea, 90min understands that talks are ongoing with academy graduate Lewis Hall over a new contract.
Hall, a midfielder by trade, has spent plenty of time operating on the left side of Chelsea’s defence and is understood to have been permanently promoted to the first team, and so the Blues are keen to reward him with fresh terms.
The 18-year-old’s current deal runs until 2025 but Chelsea’s plan is to tie him down for longer with a salary increase to reflect his recent progress.