Chelsea 20-21: Plastic Fans and Shiny New Toys

tmracht

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Summer transfer window in full swing, Chelsea has been busy since well before the summer re-break. Coming off a surprising Champions League spot finish with Frank Lampard steering the transfer banned side into the top 4. Huge progression from young players was key for the team with Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham and Christian Pulisic all having impactful seasons. The looming and lingering question remains what to do in net with Kepa the Keepah not really up to the task this season and Caballero getting key starts at the end of the campaign.

Currently In:
Hakim Ziyech from Ajax (~44m)
Timo Werner from RB Leipzig (~58m)

Rumored:
Ben Chilwell from Leicester City (~A lot)
Kai Havertz from Bayer Leverkusen (~Even More)
Thiago Silva from Bosman (Freeeee)

Out:
Willian to Arsenal on a Free
Pedro to nowhere yet on a Free
Mario Pasalic to Atalanta (no not the MLS for ~16m)
Alvaro Morata to Atletico (~76m)
 

cromulence

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I initially said that Pedro moved to Roma, but it actually looks like it's not official yet. Oops.
 

cromulence

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Well according to Transfermarkt, it's 98% likely to happen. I'm sure they've arrived at that number via a highly scientific process.
 

tmracht

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The rumor mill continues in full effect most from Fabrizio Romano.
Malang Sarr (Out Of Contract French U21 CB/LB previously of Nice) to sign a 5 year deal then promptly get shipped to either Serie A or the Bundesliga. (Daily mail, The Guardian and most of twitter).
Thiago Silva (Out Of Contract Geezer CB previously of PSG) set to sign a 2 year deal, then promptly threaten the continued 4 hour warning time from this window.
Bakayoko to AC Milan? Maldini says they are in talks.
Tomori to Ligue 1?
Emerson shot to the moon?

So I kind of like the direction if they can make most of these work.
Moving Tomori to get more experience makes a ton of sense, he's got a lot of talent not much top flight experience. Replacing him with Silva (~115k/week) is good business and if the deal is a short term one for Silva, you look to bring back Tomori after the season.
Emerson leaving opens up that spot for Chilwell (I mean Chilwell is obviously better) but for squad/wage balancing it's a smart move.
Bakayoko just never really worked out for Chelsea for whatever reason, he's settled in nicely at Milan though. Hopefully they can come to terms.
Sarr seems like a classic Chelsea move, they'll sign him, pump his value with loans and then dump him in a few years, while he gets some nice wages in the interim.
 

TheRealness

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Chilwell signed with Chelsea today, per their official twitter. I understand they paid $50m to get him.

Thiago Silva also appears to have signed.

There are also rumors they have a deal for Havertz at around $90m.
 

tmracht

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Well Chilwell brings some much needed pace to the LB role, he's been measured as one of the fastest players in the league as recently as 2018 per talksport article he was 15th fastest recorded speed at a pace of 34.385 km/h. For reference Calvin-Lewin was top dog at 34.935 km/h. I would imagine neither Alonso or Azpi we're quite that fast when deployed there.

Marc Guehi back out on loan to Swansea, should be helpful he has some stability in his loan spell as he was there last year as well.

Silva supposed to be announced any moment now or now or maybe now or how about tomorrow.

Ditto Havertz now or maybe now or tomorrow?

F5 season hits the Chelsea pages.
 

tmracht

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He brings the one thing that was really lacking in the center, real strength on the ground and in the air, they didn't have someone that was immovable.

He may not have the same burst as he did as a younger man, but he still brings that physical nature. He's 10 team of the years in 10 seasons shows he's consistency and stature in the league.

Hopefully he brings an air of experience and knowledge for the younger defenseman hopefully could be a massive massive signing for the team.
 

InstaFace

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A nice Athletic article on how Chelsea is able to afford all of these transfers (spoiler alert: amortization over the life of the new player's contract), and how Abramovitch's general commitment level to the club can be seen to remain extremely high.


(as always, PM me for a 30-day "guest pass" to The Athletic if you'd like one)
 

tmracht

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A nice Athletic article on how Chelsea is able to afford all of these transfers (spoiler alert: amortization over the life of the new player's contract), and how Abramovitch's general commitment level to the club can be seen to remain extremely high.


(as always, PM me for a 30-day "guest pass" to The Athletic if you'd like one)
I know it's "dirty" money but before the whole political issues crept up and he stopped traveling to England he was always in the box. He was constantly hype, he's a good owner.

And Marina is kind of a wizard. The club is lucky to have them.
 

TheRealness

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Kai Havertz officially signed with Chelsea. They are going to be very good. Seems to put Mount against Pulisic for playing time though, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see Pulisic be a super sub the first couple months once he’s fit to play. Feels like Lampard values Mount over Christian, but not sure where else mount plays with Ziyech likely at RW and Havertz at CM
 

TheRealness

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I would imagine it would be something like:

Werner
Pulisic. Ziyech
Havertz
Mount Jorginho
Kante
Chilwell. James/Azpi
Silva


Kepa/Sieve

Edit: My spacing got altered, but basically I would have Werner up front, Pulisic/Ziyech on the wings, and basically a 3-4-2-1 or 3-4-3 formation.
 

FanRoy

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I'd be a little surprised if Jorginho is in the starting 11. Not that it's ever been his game, but he doesn't seem to be able to keep pace on his defensive responsibilities. Too bad, his vision and passing imagination is beautiful. I'd rather see something like:

Werner
Pulisic/Mount Ziyech
Havertz
RLC/Kovacic Kante
Chilwell Silva Rudiger/Azpi James
GK (Mendy?)

I don't get to watch as much as I'd like, but from what I've seen... I think Mount should be on the front line given his incisiveness and direct attacking mentality. Would be nice if RLC could prove healthy as his size and physicality would really help cover the back. And I'll put on the uniform if it helps get rid of Kepa, I don't rate him at all.

Edit: same spacing problem as above. 4-3-3 seems best given the players I've mentioned, though.
 

tmracht

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Anyone want to do a projected depth chart on the most likely formation?
Well it's not quite tomorrow...
Code:
             Werner (Giroud)
 Pulisic (Mount) Havertz (Ross) Ziyech (CHO)
      Kovacic (RLC) Kante (Jorginho)
Chilwell (Alonso)                  Azpi (James)
        Silva (Tomori) Rudiger (Zouma)
             SoS Send Help (Caballero)
I would guess it's something like this with Chilwell running rampant down the left, Pulisic tucking in a bit and Azpi being a bit more defensive minded.
 

TheRealness

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I know Pulisic is "full" training, but I wouldn't be surprised if he sits on Monday or comes in as a sub. I would bet you see the new guys though (Havertz, Werner, Ziyech, Chilwell and Silva) with Mount on the LW in Pulisic's spot.
 

cromulence

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I know Pulisic is "full" training, but I wouldn't be surprised if he sits on Monday or comes in as a sub. I would bet you see the new guys though (Havertz, Werner, Ziyech, Chilwell and Silva) with Mount on the LW in Pulisic's spot.
Ziyech and Chilwell are out injured.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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I think there is a good chance that Lampard will eventually have to start Giroud or Tammy with this group. Werner really seems much more suited to play as a wide forward coming in from the left than a CF and him constantly switching with Havertz in the middle, like in the first half today, didn't seem all that effective either.

Chelsea has added a lot of offensive talent but it might also be fair to claim that they bought four players (Werner, Havertz, Ziyech, Pulisic) whose best role is wing/wide forward. None of them are center forwards and its not really clear that any of them are most comfortable as a #10 either.

Werner heat map last year in the Bundesliga. Not a center forward's positioning by any means.

34343

But Pulisic also likes to play on the left and occupy the same spaces.

34344


Havertz played mainly last year on the right, coming into the center on occasion, but not as a 10.

34342

Ziyech plays either wing but not often through the middle.

34345
 

tmracht

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I think Giroud would be pretty amazing with this group, but I do think Havertz has a chance to do well through the center. But the real problem is going to be who to pair with Silva.
 

OCST

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Not earth-shattering insight, but I'm leery of this side: Lampard doesn't know how to set up his Stratego pieces in attack; and they can be gotten at. If I'm playing Chelsea I know that they're not likely to beat me 1-0 so if they get that first goal I'm not panicking.