He scored a brace in back-to-back games, his first against Norwich City securing the win, while the most recent against Sheffield United gave Chelsea a commanding lead – but ultimately saw them fail to win yet another Premier League home game. Life in the top-flight is pretty good for Tammy Abraham, who returned to his parent club after a fantastic campaign last season with Aston Villa. The 21-year-old was instrumental in their promotion push and returns to Chelsea hungrier than ever for more.
He currently sits joint-third in the Premier League top scorers table with four goals, alongside Burnley’s Ashley Barnes, behind Sergio Agüero (six) and Teemu Pukki and Raheem Sterling (five); and in Premier League odds is 12/1 to finish as Golden Boot.
Interestingly, this report from the BBC shows that since the start of the 2018-19 season, Abraham has scored more goals than the likes of Sterling, Jamie Vardy and even Harry Kane. With Abraham’s goals coming in both the Championship and Premier League, his four for Chelsea this term, added to the 26 scored for Villa last season (including one in the play-off semi-final against West Bromwich Albion) leave him on 30 – five ahead of Hull City’s Jarrod Bowen.
Successful loan spells
After making two Premier League appearances for the Blues in the 2015-16 season, as an 18-year-old, both as a substitute, Abraham enjoyed three season-long loan spells.
The first at Bristol City (2016-17) culminated in the striker winning the club’s Player of the Season, Young Player of the Season and Top Goal Scorer awards – becoming the first player in The Robins’ history to do so. He scored 23 goals in 41 league appearances, with an additional three coming in the League Cup. His prolific goal tally also saw Abraham make history, overtaking (then of Fulham) Moussa Dembélé’s record for the most goals scored by a teenager.
He returned to Chelsea at the end of the season, signed a five-year contract with the club and that same day, joined Swansea City on a season-long loan. Abraham started brightly, making the step up from the Championship to the Premier League – scoring his first goal for the Swans in a 2-0 win over Crystal Palace. After netting a brace against newly-promoted Huddersfield Town in October, he suffered a barren spell and it was both player and club that suffered with form. His next league goal came in April but without a win in their final nine games, Swansea were relegated. Abraham scored five in 31 league appearances (eight from 39 in all competitions) and once again returned to his parent club.
Just last season Abraham went back to the form he found at Ashton Gate – and played a pivotal part in Villa’s return to the top-flight. After scoring on his home debut (versus Rotherham United), he went on to net four goals in Villa’s 5-5 draw with Nottingham Forest, becoming the first Villa player to score four goals in a single game. The records kept on coming, in January he was the first player since 1933 to score in seven consecutive home games at Villa Park; while in February he became the Villans’ first player since 1981 to notch 20 goals in a season. Abraham reached his landmark 50th goal in March and then went on to become the first Villa player to score 25 goals in a season since 1977. He ended the season just second in the goal scoring tally, behind Norwich’s Pukki – and both have started this campaign equally as brightly.
Return to Chelsea, expectation and England call-up?
On returning to Stamford Bridge, Abraham was awarded the number 9 shirt – previously worn by many of the club’s legends including Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, Gianluca Vialli and Hernan Crespo. However, in recent seasons, it’s believed the shirt is cursed – just look at the likes of Fernando Torres, Alvaro Morata and Gonzalo Higuain.
It’s recently been reported that Abraham is staying late after training to consolidate his place in the side, keeping him ahead of Olivier Giroud, who has been consigned to the bench as Lampard opts for a youthful side. Following his brace against Sheffield United, Lampard said: “I’m delighted with Tammy. He has a really great attitude in training, a desire to score goals and his all-round game was really good as well.
“Myself and the staff are working closely with him on little bits of his game where I think he can be even better and he’s been very receptive to that.”
While Gareth Southgate has already named his side for the upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against Bulgaria and Kosovo, there’s no doubting that he is on the radar of the England boss – “Tammy is one of a number of players who have either started the season well or we know well from our junior teams. This squad can look different over the next months,” Southgate said.
With Chelsea’s Mason Mount selected for those games later on in the month, surely Abraham will be next in line. Four goals in two games is remarkable form, particularly for someone so young and if Abraham’s form continues, not only will he warrant that place in the national side, but he could well turn around Chelsea’s fortunes.