Chelsea boffins are already thinking about
the next season and there is a strong likelihood that Maurizio Sarri may not be
in charge of the team for the 2019-20 campaign. After a disappointing set of
results throughout the campaign, Chelsea find themselves once again in a top
four race and not in the title race. Sarri may have started out extremely well
but he has been hit by a number of critics in the last few months. The
Italian’s stubbornness to stick with the same starting lineup and tactics have
been a major disappointment in a division where managers are tactically astute.
The Blues had a strong look at Zinedine
Zidane and the likelihood of signing the Frenchman as the next Chelsea manager.
This would have been a great move for the club, who are fighting to keep Eden
Hazard from the sight of Real Madrid. However,Zidane’s decision to join Real
Madrid is a major blow for the team. Now, Chelsea are looking at two major
candidates who can potentially lead the club back to successful days – Frank
Lampard and Nuno Espiritu Santo. The former is a fan’s favourite and will
command a huge deal of respect, while the latter has been able to make a strong
impression in the Premier league with Wolves.
Both managers lack a significant amount of experience at the top level. Lampard has just begun his managerial career with Derby County, while Nuno is experiencing a taste in the Premier League only for the first time. Sarri appears to have fallen out with most of the players with striker Olivier Giroud claiming that the favouritism in the squad is starting to affect him. Chelsea are no stranger to changing managers, but it remains to be seen if Roman Abramovich will sanction a move for two inexperienced managers.
Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata has reportedly turned down a move to the Chinese Super League his summer.
The star was offered a mega deal worth £147 million to move Far East but he turned it down without batting any eyelid, preferring the competitive European football.
Marca reports that the player would have earned almost £30 million in annual wages for five years had he agreed to the deal. The player is an interest of Premier League giants Chelsea. Coach Antonio Conte managed him while he was on loan at Juventus and they could reunite at Stamford Bridge after this season.
Morata has netted 20 times in all competitions this term, despite Coach Zinedine Zidane favouring Karim Benzema in the pecking order. If the Spaniard stays at Madrid, he could get to take over from Benzema but he would get fewer chances before then. At the Bernabeu, he is assured titles too while leaving Spain might be a gamble.
With the future of Blues striker Diego Costa not certain, and with Chelsea set to play more competitions, the club requires a top striker. Morata has the youth and experience and he would be a good fit but for now no definite decisions seem to have been made. Continue reading
Cesc Fabregas has denied suggestions that he is looking for a move away from Chelsea.
He has categorically deny these rumours and says that he is only focused on the blues. Since coming to Chelsea in the summer of 2014, the midfielder has been an immense part of the squad. He was a major factor behind of the club winning the league title in the 2014-15 season. Even though he has not been a regular starter this season, largely due to the lack of Champions League football, Fabregas has played a crucial role in Chelsea remaining top of the table for much of the campaign.
The blues midfielder, though, has been linked with the likes of Manchester United and Liverpool in the last couple of weeks. Both clubs are ready to make an offer of around £25 million for the 30-year-old. Chelsea would not be in the mood to lose him, as it is extremely difficult to replace a player like Fabregas. Continue reading
Antonio Conte has confirmed that John Terry may not play much in the remainder of the campaign.
The Chelsea defender recently announced his exit from the club at the end of the season. This comes as a major news considering that Terry has been at the club for over two decades. He has also been the captain of Chelsea since 2004. It has always been difficult to replace a player like Terry in all these years, but age has been catching up with the former England captain in the last few years. He has played very little football in this current campaign. There appears no room for sentiment as Conte is not prepared to give the player a Wembley send-off by giving him a starting line-up position against Tottenham this weekend.
Chelsea take on Tottenham in the FA Cup semifinals. Gary Cahill is unavailable for the game due to a minor injury problem. The club are also coming on the back of a poor run of form which has seen them suffer two defeats – against Crystal Palace and Manchester United – in the last three matches. Continue reading
Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma says that manager Antonio Conte is a perfectionist when it comes to preparing the team for the games.
Conte has managed to transform the fortunes of Chelsea from a team that struggled to even qualify for the Europa League last season into title contenders once again. A 10 point advantage at the top of the table sees the team classified as favourites to win the league title for a second time in three seasons. One of the reasons for this excellent form in the campaign appears to be the meticulous preparation taken up by the manager.
Zouma spend a significant chunk of the campaign on the sidelines, but he recently returned to first team action. Even though he has been unable to establish itself in the starting lineup, Zouma remains an integral part of the squad. Continue reading
Chelsea have been given the permission to build a £500 million 60,000-seat stadium by the mayor of London, according to reports.
This means the club can demolish or rework the current state of the stadium to increase the capacity from the current 41,600 to 60,000.
Hammersmith and Fulham Council approved the plans earlier in the year but the mayor – who makes the final decision – has given the go-ahead.
“Having taken a balanced view of the application, I’m satisfied this is a high-quality and spectacular design which will significantly increase capacity within the existing site, as well as ensuring fans can have easy access from nearby transport connections.
“I’m confident this new stadium will be a jewel in London’s sporting crown and will attract visitors and football fans from around the world,” the mayor Sadiq Khan said.
The Premier League side was elated at the permission to proceed. Continue reading
When it comes to winning the Premier League title of the current season, Chelsea are the favorites as Antonio Conte has led his team to the top of the English League with 56 points secured from the 23 opening league matches that they have played so far.
Tottenham Hotspur is sitting in 2nd
place with 47 points, Arsenal in 3rd
also with 47 points, Liverpool in 4th
place with 46 points, Manchester City also has 46 points and Manchester United is slightly behind the rest of the table-toppers with 42 points.
Eden Hazard believes that despite Manchester United falling behind in the English Premier League standings, they are one of the main teams that Chelsea should be worried about along with Arsenal.
‘’I think Arsenal and Manchester United are the biggest title rivals. United had a bad first part of the season and I think for a couple of games now, they played well. They drew against Stoke, but they have good players and the squad is very good. The manager is good, so they will be second or third. Tottenham also are strong. We lost there, but for me it is more Manchester United. They are more experienced. That is my opinion, maybe I’m wrong’’ Chelsea’s Eden Hazard said. Continue reading
Recent revelations have showed that Chelsea really wanted to get Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly during the summer.
Sky Sports reported that Chelsea’s bid of £38 million was rejected in July, but the club’s chairman has said that the Blues actually re-submitted a bid of £58 million in a bid to get the defender this summer.
Aurelio De Laurentiis said Chelsea came to them more than once as they really wanted the defender before they turned their attention to their former player David Luiz last minute. Paris St Germain released the Brazilian to join them in defense, else the Blues would have had to wait till January for an addition.
“They offered to me £30, 35, 40, 45, 50 [million]. Mr Conte I said ‘Marina [Granovskaia, Chelsea Director] is behind me, follow me,’ I offered him that. Last moment, two days before the closing of the market, I hear £58 [million] – something like that,” De Laurentiis said.
The deal couldn’t be completed, and Koulibaly eventually renewed his contract with Napoli that would ensure he remains with the Serie A side till 2021. However, De Laurentiis hinted that the deal doesn’t mean he still couldn’t be sold.
“Koulibaly I need here to make the match. I need to play, so I need the players. Koulibaly, this year, will remain here. Next year, we will speak about,” he said.
The rumours linking Diego Costa with a move away from Chelsea do not seem to be going away even after the appointment of Antonio Conte.
The striker has been linked with an imminent return to Atletico Madrid, where he became a legend in the last few years. Costa was a major factor in helping Chelsea lift the league title in the 2014-15 season, but he had a very poor season the last time around. His poor form was especially pronounced in the first half of the season when José Mourinho was the manager. Incredibly, Costa’s form including dramatically after Mourinho was sacked and Guus Hiddink was appointed.
The patchy form for the Spaniard in the last two seasons may have been one of the reasons, while language issues have also been spoken about. Costa has scored 36 goals in the last two campaigns, which is a good return for someone who cost only £ 30 million. At 27 years of age, the striker still has plenty to offer for the club if he manages to strike good form. After having been an extended holiday due to Euro 2016, Costa was seen only towards the latter end of the Chelsea’s pre-season. It remains highly doubtful if he would start the game against West Ham on Monday night.
The second half of the campaign has been excellent for Chelsea, according to interim manager Guus Hiddink.
He replaced Jose Mourinho midway through the campaign. At the time of his arrival, there was even a possibility of relegation battle for Chelsea. Such was the incredible fall from grace for the 2015-16 champions that Hiddink was largely expected to not make much of an impact in terms of league position. This has been true to a certain extent, as Chelsea have been only able to make it back into the top 10 of the table.
They have missed out on top four qualification and will not be playing in the Champions League or Europa League next season. This will be the first time Chelsea are without any form of European football since the arrival of Roman Abramovich in 2003. However, Hiddink says that the damage was done in the first half of the season. Since his arrival, Chelsea have lost only a handful of matches in all competitions. Just like in his first spell as the interim manager, Hiddink has revealed that he will not be staying at the club beyond the end of the campaign. The club decided to go for Italy boss Antonio Conte on a three-year contract. Continue reading