During the close-season the list of players linked with a move to Chelsea has continued to lengthen, but unless The Blues plan to have two separate squads for Domestic and European competition they can obviously not all be purchased.
There if often too much of an emphasis on top clubs owning and signing ‘marquee’ players, for example the Galicticos, or Chelsea’s very-public pursuit of Robinho in 2008. Although this brings commercial benefits, there is far more importance in finding the players a team needs, regardless of reputation.
Neymar, Romelu Lukaku, Sergio Aguero, Javier Pastore, Kevin De Bruyne, Wesley Sneijder, Luka Modric, Radamel Falcao, Joao Moutinho, Alexis Sanchez. Ten names that have featured heavily throughout the summer; some consistently and others since the arrival of Andre Villas-Boas.
The new manager will know who he wants in his squad, in terms of both potential targets and those from the current crop. Villas-Boas says he will talk with and review every existing player before making a decision over their futures, but if he is already plotting moves in the transfer market then he must surely know where he wants them in his team, and who they will replace. The experienced high-profile group of Drogba, Essien, Malouda, Anelka and Lampard will all find their Chelsea careers under threat, and although it might be hard to say goodbye to a few, I would not question the decision to axe them – they have been great servants but it is time to build for the future and create a new era of Blues stars.
Lukaku and De Bruyne are two exciting prospects, but given that negotiations were supposedly already underway prior to his appointment, both expected deals MUST be authorised by the boss. The 33-year-old’s outstanding ability at reading the game and knowledge of players is clear to see from his scouting days, so trust should be put in him to select the individuals he desires to create his team, regardless of their reputation. However good they might be, if the targets identified previously by the club are not who he wants, then they should not be signed.
With pre-season training fast approaching, it looks set to be an interesting few weeks ahead for Chelsea’s fans as new faces begin to arrive at Stamford Bridge, forcing others out the exit door.
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