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FIFA restrictions might keep Tammy Abraham at Aston Villa for the season

The case of Hatem Ben Arfa back in 2015 could be positive news for Aston Villa, who look to hold onto Tammy Abraham

Aston Villa v Leeds United - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Neville Williams/Aston Villa FC via Getty Images

Ever since Chelsea hit a bit of a rough patch with their strike force, rumours have been circling that they may recall the striker that they have loaned to Aston Villa - Tammy Abraham. Now, the rumours have hit fever pitch - earlier today it was reported by a number of sources that Wolverhampton Wanderers had put in a bid of £18 million for the striker in a move that would cancel his loan at Villa. Various corners of the football press then reported that Chelsea had accepted this bid. For a while, and still now, it seems as though the situation could occur where Villa are left high and dry without Abraham up front.

With Tammy bagging over 15 goals this season already. Can you blame Villa fans for clutching at straws? It was said that the Community Shield match in which Tammy Abraham featured for Chelsea counted as an ‘official fixture’ and thus would render any move by Wolves dead - as Tammy could not register and play for a 3rd football club in a single season. This was found to be a moot point.

However, our Alex Carson passed on an article regarding the case of Hatem Ben Arfa and Nice. This story was also circulated on Twitter.

The case of Hatem Ben Arfa will be of interest to Villa fans as Ben Arfa was refused permission to sign for Nice of Ligue 1 back in 2015. Why? As he had not only featured for Hull City after being loaned out by Newcastle, but because he had played for Newcastle’s U21 side earlier in the season. He could join the club, but not in an official playing capacity. In other words, the move was almost pointless, despite the fact that Ben Arfa was released by Newcastle.

As for Abraham, he has featured for Chelsea in the Community Shield, but also for Chelsea Under 23’s in the Premier League 2. If we go back to Ben Arfa’s case, this is the exact situation that saw Ben Arfa denied international clearance to sign for Nice.

Tammy Abraham will have a bit more to lose than Ben Arfa if this applies to any transfer triangle between Villa, Chelsea and Wolves. He could be recalled by Chelsea and play for Chelsea. He could be signed by Wolves and theoretically loaned back to Villa for the duration of the current season. He’d effectively have to give up first team football unless Chelsea were to play him.

There’s every chance that this rule could be appealed by Wolves or Chelsea and there’s every chance that Villa could hold onto their loan star. Either way, it would be smart by Villa to not take Tammy for granted.