Chelsea 2021-22 - Reigning Champions of Europe

HowBoutDemSox

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Those other London clubs have their own threads, but not the defending Champions League title winners? Some plotlines to focus on early going:
  • How will Lukaku fit in with the existing squad, including Werner? How will his transition back to the Premier league go?
  • Will Werner be able to put the ball in the net under any circumstance, ever?
  • How much run with Pulisic get when everyone is healthy?
  • How will the young guys like Mount and Havertz continue to develop?
  • Can Kante stay healthy, and remain as dominant in the middle as he has been?
  • Will Jorginho stop dyeing his hair if he stops winning trophies, and would you take the exchange if offered?
  • What are they going to do with all their expiring contracts on defense? Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Christensen, Silva all up at the end of the season. Word is that they're working on a new deal for Trevoh Chalobah, who Tuchel is obviously impressed with right now.
  • How long will Tuchel stay in Abramovich's good graces?
  • How many superyachts are enough for Abramovich?
Anyways, should be a fun season.

 

tmracht

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Well I'll probably make sporadic posts here so thanks for starting.

Pulisic has tested positive for coronavirus so he out for Arsenal. Could not have come at a worse time for him. He was getting minutes and producing. If he has lingering affects we have seen among other athletes he could easily lose his place for a while. Looks like it was covered in other threads while I made this longer post but I'll leave it cause I agree.

Ziyech and Kanye are both available for Arsenal. That's good news especially with the Pulisic news.

Chelsea has struggled against Arsenal lately, hopefully they can change that hoodoo voodoo.

As for the plotlines who kills Tuchel first over lack of match time. Will be the one to watch the most but again availability and this squad are oxymoronic.

Jorginho can do no wrong for the next few years in my eyes.
 
Apr 14, 2006
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Great to have this thread. I've only recently started supporting Chelsea with Pulisic's transfer.

One thing I've learned to enjoy is watching Jorginho's passing and control of the midfield. Crisp passes and it seems he's already decided exactly where the ball will go before he gets it so that there's no time wasted.

I wonder where Mount will play, probably alternating between a forward and midfield spot. I would think for this match they might try Lukaku, Werner, and either Havertz or Mount at the top.

Interested to see if any more transfers come through. With Chalobah's outstanding play, is there still a need for Kounde? If so, that would position the club well on defense. Or does it leave money and time to push through for Declan Rice or Tchouameni?
 

tmracht

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Great to have this thread. I've only recently started supporting Chelsea with Pulisic's transfer.

One thing I've learned to enjoy is watching Jorginho's passing and control of the midfield. Crisp passes and it seems he's already decided exactly where the ball will go before he gets it so that there's no time wasted.

I wonder where Mount will play, probably alternating between a forward and midfield spot. I would think for this match they might try Lukaku, Werner, and either Havertz or Mount at the top.

Interested to see if any more transfers come through. With Chalobah's outstanding play, is there still a need for Kounde? If so, that would position the club well on defense. Or does it leave money and time to push through for Declan Rice or Tchouameni?
Awesome welcome to the blues :)

Kounde I think is a nice answer to all the expiring options, if you don't want to extend Zouma or Silva or Christensen you will need new blood. The question is who is remaining at the end of the season. I think Mount will play a lot as an inverted winger and as a drink stirrer behind Lukaku or Werner.
 

Ale Xander

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I’m so giddy over getting Lukaku. And confident he won’t be loaned to Albion this time

Should be a fun year
 

tmracht

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Post it in the United thread with a shot of their fans reactions as they found out and we will call it even
Man I don't have that one my short list of saved gifs that would have been handy to have living in Thailand, soooo many Red Devils fans there.
 

tmracht

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Really like to see what that front three of Havertz Mount and Lukaku can do today. I'm not sure what the best front 3 will be, but I really like this setup.
 
Apr 14, 2006
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Same. Excited for this match. Probably the best front three, but I'm also interested to see how Werner and Lukaku might work together--maybe substitute in the second half.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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They look so much more dangerous in the final third with a legit #9. I was pulling for them to break the bank on Haaland given the age difference, but Lukaku looks like he'll fit great with the roster. Interesting that Tuchel subbed in Werner with a few minutes left, curious to see how those two play together going forward since both can draw a significant amount of defensive attention. Huge match next week at Anfield.
 

tmracht

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I think the more interesting thing we'd be how Lukaku, Werner and James play. James was playing extremely high up the field running into all the space that was being left wide open by the backside of Lukaku drawing defenders. If that's someone with Werner speed and availability, does that mean James takes less risk going forward because he's got a burner in front of him as opposed to someone like Mount or Havertz who we're happy to stay left and centrally to allow James to overlap. I think it's a good problem to have, with some practice time and matchups they may be able to figure it out but they have the real chance of creating very well flowing football. I was actually surprised how good Lukaku was distributing considering he has only been with the team a week.
 
Apr 14, 2006
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We're starting to get a sense of what Tuchel wants to bring together. He's bringing people who are incredibly fit players who can run up and down the field on defense and offense. He's opting for plenty of space on the wing but then also really fast and skilled players in midfield and at forward. There's a lot of youth and speed--Werner, Havertz, Mount (a little less speedy), Pulisic, and Ziyech. And now with Lukaku, someone who helps open up space for all that speed. There were a few glimpses this game with quick strikes. It was also exciting at the end when Kante was subbed on and he was flying on offense.

Something else I noticed was that Tuchel has gotten a lot from players who at one time were either questioned or possibly on the way out, which includes Alonso, Jorginho, and Rudiger at times over the last few seasons.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Interesting look at how they paid for Lukaku through sales:

View: https://twitter.com/NizaarKinsella/status/1429774571557752832


Nizaar Kinsella
@NizaarKinsella
It looks like Zappacosta and Ugbo will go through as permanent exits this week taking Chelsea to over £100m in player sales. More than they paid for Lukaku. *that's not including the various loan fees. #stockpilinglife

Nizaar Kinsella
@NizaarKinsella
Chelsea's £93m player sales:
Abraham - £34m (in installments)
Tomori - £25m
Guehi - £18m
Livramento - £5m
Moses - £4m
Bate - £1.5m
Peart-Harris - £1.5m
Ekwah - £1.5m*
Simeu - £1.5m*
Giroud - £900k
Ugbo - £4m
Kenedy - 500k loan fee
*depending on first-team achievements #CFC
 

HowBoutDemSox

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UCL Group Stage draw now finished. Chelsea is in Group H, along with Juventus, Football Club Zenit, and Malmö.

Those recent Ronaldo transfer rumors suddenly got a bit more interesting. Roman is also probably happy to get a game in Russia

Edit: Full draw. Man City and PSG in the same group should be fun.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Koundé transfer talks still ongoing. Chelsea offering €50m, Sevilla wants more. We'll see what happens, but they could certainly use a long term CB with so many current players in their back three in the last year of their contracts, especially with Zouma seemingly out the door to West Ham (the latest on that deal was an issue with the physical, but reports are that's settled).

View: https://twitter.com/FabrizioRomano/status/1431439903829659651
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Down a man and no Kante in the second half, a herculean effort by everyone to save the draw. A well earned point today, though rough when it looked like we were on track for the win.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Reports starting to circulate of a potential CHO loan to Dortmund. It’s an interesting move since he’s clearly below some other options on the wing, but he’s got some goal scoring potential they might need this year. Would a season with more playing time in the Bundesliga be worth it from a development standpoint compared with the potential of needing him this year if injuries pile up, and as Tuchel needs to rotate more given the busy schedule with UCL games/travel (and hopefully deep runs at the domestic cups)?
 

tmracht

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Reports starting to circulate of a potential CHO loan to Dortmund. It’s an interesting move since he’s clearly below some other options on the wing, but he’s got some goal scoring potential they might need this year. Would a season with more playing time in the Bundesliga be worth it from a development standpoint compared with the potential of needing him this year if injuries pile up, and as Tuchel needs to rotate more given the busy schedule with UCL games/travel (and hopefully deep runs at the domestic cups)?
He needs minutes, there are so many options up front. They need another central midfielder as opposed to another winger.

Dortmund hopefully would have good reason to develop him. Since they are usually so good at increasing value of players.
 

67YAZ

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The challenge is that Dortmund signed Donyell Malen to replace Sancho. They are going to be more invested in Malen’s success than a loanee’s.
 

tmracht

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The challenge is that Dortmund signed Donyell Malen to replace Sancho. They are going to be more invested in Malen’s success than a loanee’s.
Yep ideally it would be loan with option to buy, or sale with buy back or whatever. Just a straight loan doesn't give them that incentive this year.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Sounds like Saul is coming over on a loan, the Kounde deal seems dead with the teams too far apart on the fee.
View: https://mobile.twitter.com/FabrizioRomano/status/1432762013718093830

Probably the more important deal for this year, given the lack of depth at central midfield. They’ll still need to figure out what the CB situation is for next year with so many guys in their last contract years, though it sounds like Christensen is close to an extension.

Edit: some reporting an option to buy as part of the Saul loan.
View: https://mobile.twitter.com/SkyKaveh/status/1432762349564448771
 
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bosox4283

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I'm happy for Saul that he can land at Chelsea -- I think he feels that he can no longer progress as he wants under Simeone, and I think Simeone knows that Saul is not able to give him exactly what he wants. Saul is a really versatile player, and the best version of Saul offers some great offensive skills. I hope Tuchel can get him back to that level and that he really contributes there.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdPZyE5ZP9M
 

teddykgb

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Seems like there’s one too many midfielders at Chelsea now. Kante and Jorginho already pair often and Kovacic can be on outside in rotation so how do they deploy Saul?
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Seems like there’s one too many midfielders at Chelsea now. Kante and Jorginho already pair often and Kovacic can be on outside in rotation so how do they deploy Saul?
Kante is made of glass and even when healthy will get rotated plenty to save him for big matchups, UCL, etc. That means they’re a Jorginho or Kovacic injury away from not having a solid option at CM for long stretches, or risk running Kante into the ground. It’s a long season and I’m sure they’ll find playing time for all of them.
 
Apr 14, 2006
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Missed part of the game today, but Lukaku, Kova, Silva, and Mendy were great. I thought Jorginho really helped in controlling the pitch after halftime. It seemed that Werner helped in the leadup to the final goal, too.
 

tmracht

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Saul hopefully will settle into the EPL flow. He looked rough today. Lukaku worth his weight in computer chips.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Today was the kind of match that would have been a 0-0 draw last year. Lukaku has been showing early why they needed to add a big, clinical finishing striker, and he’s been terrific in that role so far.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Between a stretch with multiple games a week and some key guys missing time with injuries/positive COVID test, there’s been a chance for some playtime for CHO, Trevoh Chalobah, RLC, and even Ross Barkley. RLC and Chalobah in particular have looked like they can be real contributors, with RLC’s creativity in the middle being something they’ve missed at times and Chalobah being able to play as either a center-back or wing-back in Tuchel’s system.

Nice to see Werner get one today as well, I’m still bullish on an attack featuring both him and Lukaku, that’s a lot of pace out there to contend with and they can open up lanes for each other.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Between a stretch with multiple games a week and some key guys missing time with injuries/positive COVID test, there’s been a chance for some playtime for CHO, Trevoh Chalobah, RLC, and even Ross Barkley. RLC and Chalobah in particular have looked like they can be real contributors, with RLC’s creativity in the middle being something they’ve missed at times and Chalobah being able to play as either a center-back or wing-back in Tuchel’s system.

Nice to see Werner get one today as well, I’m still bullish on an attack featuring both him and Lukaku, that’s a lot of pace out there to contend with and they can open up lanes for each other.
Werner and Lukaku is like a gold plated deluxe version of Werner and Poulsen from the last time Werner actually looked good. I could see that really working.
 

tmracht

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Well 9-2-1 to start the season with injuries having the lineup be topsy turvy all season. Have to say could not have asked for a better start. No one over ten appearances. Reece James your scoring leader. Chilwell right behind him. It's been a strange but effective enough offense. Pulisic starting to make impacts again would be huge. Havertz has held up well enough as a false 9.

Need to keep consistency when Mendy leaves for AFCON. But at least Kepa seems partially revitalized.
 

tmracht

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I missed the news a couple weeks back, but Trevoh Chalobah signed a new deal to keep him in blue through 2026:
https://sports.yahoo.com/trevoh-chalobah-signs-four-half-173531386.html

Nice to keep the academy guys long term, Chalobah, Mount, James and CHO playing well today was fun to watch.
Haha that was funny that I saw a new post as I was making mine. Yes that is enormous keep that youth pipeline going. Not just because it's fun to watch them go from academy to first eleven (that's awesome) but even not they can provide depth for the homegrown and prevent the need for overpaying for the likes of Drinkwater /shudder.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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It’s very impressive how Chelsea have managed to get such good performances while rotating so frequently. Their defensive record is just tremendous, most sides just can’t lay a glove on them. A real testament to Tuchel and his tactical system.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Haha that was funny that I saw a new post as I was making mine. Yes that is enormous keep that youth pipeline going. Not just because it's fun to watch them go from academy to first eleven (that's awesome) but even not they can provide depth for the homegrown and prevent the need for overpaying for the likes of Drinkwater /shudder.
And when it doesn’t quite work out or there are better options at a position, getting decent value from them in the transfer market helps keep the books balanced, like getting €40 million for Tammy Abraham, a nice player but someone who wasn’t seeing an easy path to consistent play after the Lukaku acquisition.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Chilwell with a partial ACL tear. Tuchel says they’ll try non-surgical intervention for the next six weeks to see if he can come back this season, if he doesn’t respond to that sufficiently, he’ll have surgery.
https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/soccer/2021/11/26/chelseas-chilwell-out-at-least-6-weeks-with-acl-injury/49439225/

Will probably be a lot of Alonso on the left side of the pitch, though Azpilicueta and maybe CHO can also rotate through LWB. Those are all decent options but still sucks for Ben and for the team, he has rounded into fine form after trouble making it onto the pitch early on this season.
 

tmracht

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Losing Chilwell stinks. Hopefully we get good Alonso, I'm hoping they are using the 6 week re-evaluation as a way to keep finding cover in the winter window at a minimum. I would be shocked if he has any chance to play again this season.
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Between a bad run of play, injuries to both starting wingbacks, and drama with their big summer signing, lots to talk about for our defending European champions.

But in more positive news, Thiago Silva has signed an extension to stay for another year. No news yet on Rudiger (latest rumors have him linked to a Real Madrid move this summer, though other rumors have that rumor cooling off) or Christensen, but they’re now up to two starting center backs signed for next season, which is almost enough for a team that plays a 3-4-3 system.
 

bosox4283

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What's the deal with the Lukaku situation? Is it much ado about nothing, or is there a real issue about how he fits within Tuchel's system?