What ever happened to MK Dons loanee Lewis Baker?

Another young talent from the Chelsea production line helped Dons to promotion to the Championship
Lewis BakerLewis Baker
Lewis Baker

A little over a year after Patrick Bamford returned to Stamford Bridge when his loan deal ended, Karl Robinson stumbled upon gold again when he landed Lewis Baker on loan in February 2015.

Hailing from just down the road in Luton, Baker had trials with MK Dons as a youngster but his dad could not give him a regular lift to training so opted against a move. He would eventually be picked up by Chelsea and started to make a name for himself in their academy. In January 2015, he was sent on loan to Sheffield Wednesday in the Championship, but although he penned a deal until the end of the season, his deal was cut short at four appearances.

Injury to Dele Alli away at Colchester meant Robinson needed a creative spark in the centre of the park, and landed Baker to fill the void. Despite Dons losing their first two matches with Baker in the ranks, they would mount a remarkable run of form - 10 wins and a draw from their final 11 games - to lead them to the Championship. Baker scored three goals during his 12 appearances for Dons, with his strikes against Notts County and Chesterfield of the spectacular variety.

Baker would return to Chelsea for a month before a two-year loan spell at Vitesse in Holland - a team Chelsea have a close developmental relationship with. Earning a regular spot in the side, Baker would net five goals - one of which was voted Goal of the Season - and also set a record for creating nine chances in a single game. Building on his excellent first season, Baker would become a key man for Vitesse as they won KNVB Cup for the first time in their history.

A regular with England U21s as well during this period, Baker won 17 caps for the young Lions, scoring three goals in a strong generation of talent.

With still only one three-minute FA Cup cameo under his belt for his parent club, Baker was handed a new five-year deal at Stamford Bridge in 2017 before another loan spell saw him arrive in Middlesbrough to work under Garry Monk. A regular under the former Swansea boss, Baker would make just two more outings for Boro after Monk was sacked in October as he fell out of favour with new manager Tony Pulis.

Another loan spell followed, this time at Leeds for the 2018/19 season. But Baker would have to wait until November for his first league start - the rest came as a substitute. Chelsea cut short his deal as a result, preferring to see him play regular football for Reading for the second half of the campaign.

Baker's loan journey saw him on the road again for the 2019/20 season, this time heading to Germany to line up for Fortuna Dusseldorf with an option to buy the 25-year-old included in the package. Until COVID-19 put a halt on the season, Baker had made eight appearances for the club, scoring one goal.