Eyebrows were raised when Charly Musonda was left out of Chelsea’s matchday squad for the visit of Qarabag in the Champions League on Tuesday.
For many it seemed like the perfect opportunity to give the Belgian youngster some minutes and look to build up his time on the pitch in case he was needed in the Premier League.
However, the 20-year-old was not even named on the bench for the 6-0 drubbing of the Azerbaijanis. It wasn’t through injury, as Musonda took to the pitch after the game to go through some fitness drills with the other substitutes and Kenedy.
It was curious, however, to see him not feature at all, especially when he had taken to Instagram just a few days before the game to suggest that he might be getting some minutes.
Antonio Conte spoke about his rotation policy for the match and why the likes of Andreas Christensen and Michy Batshuayi had started the game, saying: “Today I wanted to give an opportunity to Michy and to Christensen and to play in the Champions League it means the coach trusts you.
“My message tonight was this, I trust all my players, not with only words but with fact. The first game of the Champions League and I decided to start with the rotation because we have to start a process to improve these players.
“Because if you think like last season to play with only 13 players we are crazy. We have to improve these players and create a good competition between them, a positive competition. It is very important this.”
So does it mean that Conte does not trust Musonda? It certainly suggests that much as those players will no doubt be part of the Premier League squad, however Musonda may well not be.
We will get to see the young winger, with Chelsea taking on Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday night and the young Belgian is set for his first start of the season.
But will we see him in the Premier League after his short Burnley stint? Musonda could be another one that goes through the loan system, never to be seen again after such a promising start?
Hopefully not, but the curious case of his future continues to amaze and Blues supporters are left baffled by his exclusion so far.