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With the transfer window set to open in less than a week, the transfer rumours are starting to gain traction. There have been a slew of confirmed transfers already amongst premier league clubs, and Chelsea are being linked with even more stars as July 1st edges nearer.

Robert Green – Source (The Guardian)

With Petr Cech having all but sealed his deal to Arsenal, Chelsea will turn to Rob Green to play second fiddle to Courtois. The English keeper has endured somewhat of a torrid 2015 at QPR, with the club never looking like putting up a scrap in the process of being relegated.

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis –

Cech leaving is a disaster, to put it bluntly. The keeper has been between the sticks for our most successful decade, arguably remaining in the top 5 keepers in world football for the majority of that decade. Indeed it is hard to think of someone who has been so constantly reliable over the past ten years, Buffon maybe? Whatever the case, we are losing a legend, however the only thing I would prefer less, is to lose Courtois.

Hopefully the grass is greener for Cech at Arsenal, the man deserves to start and will do well. Thus we are (Admittedly by an awful pun) brought back to the man in question. Rob Green has international experience aplenty, and is a more than capable keeper. He also helps to fulfil our English players quota.

Rob Green will probably not fancy a season in the championship at the age of 35, and could be tempted by a chance to add some silverware to a career that arguably has deserved a lot more. I can definitely see this transfer taking place, Asmir Begovic may be the better keeper, but adds nothing to our tally of homegrown players. I also doubt that Jamal Blackman is quite at the level required as of yet.

Antonio Rudiger – Source (Telegraph)

VfB Stuttgart defender Antonio Rudiger is reportedly on Jose Mourinho’s radar, with the centre half keen on a move. The 22 year old has been plying his trade in the Bundesliga and has apparently done enough to warrant the interest of the Premier League champions.

Rudiger has appointed his brother Sahr Senesie as his new agent and has let it be known that he would prefer a move to Chelsea, Wolfsburg or Porto, according to reports in Bild.

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis –

Chelsea are seemingly being linked with every defender on the market this transfer window, with the ageing of Terry, and the imminent departure of Luis combining for an obvious deficit.

Antonio Rudiger is a young player with obvious potential for improvement. However he only made 19 appearances for Stuttgart last season, showing he is not yet fully established at the Bundesliga side.

In my opinion, Chelsea will be needing a much more talented player to improve our squad, let alone our first team, particularly with Kurt Zouma bound to improve. Undoubtedly Rudiger may be one to watch for the future, but for now Chelsea should look elsewhere.

 

Alex Oxlaide-Chamberlain – Source (Telegraph)

With Arsenal having nabbed Cech, Mourinho is apparently ready to retaliate by taking Oxlaide-Chamberlain from the North London side.

After Chelsea agreed the loan signing of Radamel Falcao from Monaco on Tuesday, Jose Mourinho is preparing to now target Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain as the Portuguese looks to further strenghten the Premier League champions’ squad.

 FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis –

Jose Mourinho has previously spoke about potential transfer games should Cech join a Premier League rival.

Asked whether Abramovich will allow Cech to pick his next club, Mourinho said: “Perhaps, perhaps. But for every club that is interested in Petr, I can find a player that I like in that team too.”

Undoubtedly Arsenal should prepare themselves for a serious bid for Oxlaide-Chamberlain. The winger is a bright England prospect, and would seemingly fit Jose Mourinho’s demands of his wide players.

At only 21, he still has massive potential to develop despite already being very effective out on the right flank. Furthermore, the chance to work with Mourinho may entice a player who will surely be aiming to reach the very top.

I would love to see Alex Oxlaide-Chamberlain in a Chelsea shirt. A bright English talent, good work ethic, what’s not to love? My only concern is that we should not pay over the odds, and pursue better value (More expensive or otherwise) options if they arise.

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Source (Telegraph)

Chelsea are said to be set to swoop for Sergio Ramos in a shock move. The Spaniard has two years left remaining on his current contract, and is said to be less than enthused by the prospect of playing for Rafa Benitez. The players agent has gone on record to state:

“For now he still has two years of contract. We await the call of the club but Real Madrid have not called me.

“For now there are no talks. Perhaps it is best if he doesn’t finish his career at Real Madrid but at another club. We never know.

“Football is changing so fast – you must enjoy the moment.”

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis –  

 

Sergio Ramos is a player that needs no introduction, the world cup winner is a player who can simultaneously frustrate and amaze at the same time. Barney Ronay of the Guardian asked if Sergio Ramos was The most wonderfully charismatic baddie in world sport. He exudes class when he wants to, and has been a mainstay of the Real Madrid team over the past decade. It’s also no doubt that Chelsea may need to reinforce in that position for next season.

Of course, all of this makes for good reading, but there’s very little chance he’ll be at Chelsea, not whilst Jose is in charge.

The public spat between the pair was borne during Mourinho’s tenure at Madrid, with Ramos (Some would say admirably) throwing his weight behind his friend and colleague Iker Casillas. The issues between the two have recurred as recently as last season. Whilst there is a possibility that Ramos and Mourinho could make up, it seems highly unlikely given how fresh the rift appears between the pair.

For me, it appears Ramos’ agent is simply trying to bump up his contract. Ramos is still integral to Madrid, and Benitez would be loathe to lose one of his best players.

 

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Source (Telegraph)

It is reported that the Brazilian holding midfielder Luiz Gustavo is keen on a move to Stamford Bridge this summer. The German Cup winner has a £33 million release clause in his contract, and the Blues could be set to strengthen in a position where they already have considerable strength. Gustavo, 27, has over 30 caps for Brazil, and has enjoyed a very good season at Wolfsburg, with former Chelsea players Andre Schurrle and Kevin De Bruyne.

The midfielder is quoted as saying:

“If I were to be able to once again have the chance to go to such a club, then that would be like a gift to me. However, I also know what I have at VfL. I am incredibly happy here.”

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis –  

The holding midfield role is one which Chelsea are quite well endowed. Nemanja Matić has been nothing short of a revelation since rejoining the Blues, and it’s quite clear that his tutelage under former Benfica manager Jorge Jesus was incredibly productive. Alongside Cesc Fábregas, it’s clear we have one of the best midfield partnerships in the league.

Thus it’s quite hard to see exactly where Luiz Gustavo fits into the Chelsea team. Although that is nothing to discredit the Brazilian, he had a quite impressive average rating of 7.26 this season with Wolfsburg, but even that doesn’t earn him a starting berth in the Chelsea midfield.

Thus not only does it raise questions regarding Chelsea’s purported interest in the player, but also the players interest in a move to the Premier League Champions. He has already failed to make a real impact at a big club, as he moved from Bayern Munich to get more first team football. Would he really be keen on going through another similar experience?

Furthermore, what would this mean for the development of Ruben Loftus-Cheek? There is a definite drive and enthusiasm of the Chelsea faithful for the young English midfielder to have a real chance to mark himself on the Chelsea team this coming season. Signing Gustavo would only serve to hinder that chance.

Lastly, the £33 million hardly represents good value. Whilst Gustavo is a player with obvious class, he would struggle to improve our starting eleven (If at all), whilst simultaneously taking out a significant chunk of our transfer budget. Signing a defensive midfielder isn’t one of our priorities, (or one of Jose Mourinho’s), and with Chelsea seeking a more efficient transfer policy than that of yesteryear in order to comply with FFP , I can’t see this deal happening in any way at all.

 

 

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With the season drawing to a close, Chelsea are being linked with more and more transfers. Undoubtedly Jose Mourinho will not be happy watching the Champions League final on TV, and thus new signings are guaranteed. 

Douglas Costa to Chelsea (Telegraph

Chelsea have had tangible interest in the Brazilian midfielder before, having had a £19 million bid rejected in January, before signing Juan Cuadrado. 

Jose Mourinho is known to be an admirer of the player, who, much like Willian, has an impressive work ethic and an industrious playing style, which on would seemingly translate well to the Premier League.

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis –  

This rumour has a lot of substance behind it, the club have a long running interest in the player, current squad members are friends with Costa, and most importantly of all, the player has been making positive noises regarding the transfer.

Thus all the ingredients are there, whether or not Costa is good enough for Chelsea going forwards remains to be seen, as unless Costa is going to play behind the striker, he may struggle to find a way into the starting lineup.

Miranda to Chelsea (talkSPORT

Reports have been coming out that the Brazilian centre half Miranda is on his way to Stamford Bridge once the transfer window opens.

With his contract set to expire at the end of next season, Atlético may be forced to cash in on one of their most crucial players. 

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis –  

Miranda is a fantastic defender, and around about the time Brazil were 7-0 down to Germany in that infamous semi final, many people would have been wondering why he wasn’t in the starting lineup, let alone the squad. 

At 30, Miranda should have the drive and desire to fill the latter stage of his career with as much silverware as possible, furthermore, as a former teammate, he could help alleviate Diego Costa’s homesickness.

However, once again it’s tough to see where he fits into the team. Whilst it could be argued he would be an improvement over Cahill individually, he would have nowhere near the partnership Cahill and Terry currently share.

Lastly, I would prefer that Zouma was given as much playing time as possible, signing Miranda would only hinder this. Also, is it really wise to sign a player who will only be able to give another two years at the top level?

 

 

 

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It has been a busy week for football, with FIFA seemingly lurching into their largest crisis in recent memory. However the usual rumours regarding Chelsea are still bubbling over quite nicely, despite Jose Mourinho stressing the desire to avoid spending large sums in the summer, something that young stars, such as Ruben Loftus-Cheek, will be hoping is true.

Petr Cech to Arsenal (SKYSPORTS)

Petr Cech is reportedly free to speak with any interested clubs, according to his agent, Victor Kolar. Having lost his starting berth to the young Courtois, Cech is keen to move on in order to gain regular playing time.

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis – Sometimes it can seem rumours are plucked out of thin air, this one however, appears an absolute certain. There are realistically only three or four keepers who are better than the Chelsea legend, it’s just a shame for him that one of them is Thibaut Courtois, who has had an imperious debut season. Cech’s departure seems nailed on to happen before the start of the season, with the most likely destination being either Arsenal or PSG. Manchester United may also emerge as contenders should David De Gea move on.

No Chelsea fan would begrudge him a move, even to a Premier League rival, after standing between the sticks for the clubs most successful decade in our history. And indeed, after his penalty heroics on “That night in Munich”, he has license to do whatever he pleases.

Antoine Griezmann to Chelsea (Talksport)

Chelsea look set to continue last seasons plunder of Atletico Madrid by signing the French winger Antoine Griezmann. The Frenchman has a hefty release clause of �46.3 million, meaning this deal would represent the vast majority of our transfer budget.

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis – The right side of midfield has been primarily occupied by the industrial Willian for the past two seasons, however, there is a general sense that the Brazilian doesn’t offer enough in the final third, scoring only two goals in the Premier League this season. Antoine Griezmann on the other hand has scored an impressive 22, in Liga BBVA this campaign, the third highest in the league (No points for guessing the top two).

This rumour has been around for a while now, and given that Abramovich has made a habit of writing cheques to the coffers of the Calderon, it seems fairly plausible. However, given the hefty price tag, and the consensus that Juan Cuadrado should be given more time to make his mark on the right side, this could be one for the January transfer window.

Christian Benteke to Chelsea (Talksport)

The Belgian born striker has been rejuvenated under Tim Sherwood at the latter end of this season, helping Aston Villa to a rare FA cup final, and Premier League survival. A reported �32.5 million release clause has caught the attention of the Blues.

FamousCFC.com Chelsea Transfer Rumour Analysis – With Drogba set to leave the club after helping us to the league title, Chelsea will undoubtedly have to bolster our striking options once again. Whilst many fans will be hoping that young stars such as Patrick Bamford, and Dominic Solanke could be drafted in to the first team, Benteke would bring undoubted quality into the squad.

Benteke is very much a “Mourinho player”. Strong, good in the air, the Belgian striker would suit Chelsea very nicely, particularly given the current friendship the countrymen share.

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The season is not over but with nothing else left to win the Chelsea 2015/2016 planning starts now.

This summer is going to be interesting, mainly because the other teams in the league are going to buy in order to strengthen. Manchester City might need a serious overhaul and new manager, and Arsenal…will probably just buy more attacking players instead of what they actually need. The wild card is Manchester United, who might pose a threat under Louis Van Gaal next season if he can get the right players to balance his squad and fill the holes.

Chelsea however will see changes too. First, and most tragic, is Petr Cech leaving. I was hoping Cech would retire here, but he is a top 3 keeper, and so is Courtois. That situation can’t stay the same forever, and one of them has to leave. As much as I hate to say it, the team has to look to the future, and Courtois is young enough to be part of that future, Cech is not. He wants to play for a top team, and this summer will have plenty of offers. I will be sad to see him go however.

As I mentioned earlier in the post, we need some better cover for the center midfield and attacking midfield positions, so that suspensions and injuries don’t disrupt the team in the way they did this season. This need not be a massive influx of players, maybe one signing in each position should suffice, and then bring in several young players. Ruben Loftus-Cheek would actually be sufficient if Mikel doesn’t leave this summer, though I suspect the Nigerian might be on his way out.

He will also be missed, and he was always one of my favourite players at the club.

I’m curious as to whether or not Drogba will stay as a player. He provided some massive goals this season, but everyone could see that his age was finally catching up to him, and he didn’t have the legs to threaten as he once used to. I wonder if Patrick Bamford is brought in next season to provide a third option, or if Drogba will continue to play for one more season as third choice.

But I am glad him and Remy were brought in, because they scored massive goals when Costa was gone, and deputized ably.

Next season Chelsea 2015/2016, I would like to Chelsea retain the league title, and also win at least one of the domestic cups again. A league and cup double is always so satisfying. I also expect them to move further into the Champions League next season, ideally to win it. The squad we have is excellent now, and with some more depth, means we can rest big players to keep them fresh for the big CL games. I think this squad can handle the big guns next season, be it Madrid, Barca or Bayern, and there is no excuse for at least not making it to the semi finals.

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This season actually saw two different versions of Chelsea. In the first half of the season, Chelsea played some really beautiful football. There was quick passing, chance creation, trickery, flair, speed, and good defending as well. It was pleasing on the eye and saw plenty of goals. However, January saw a different Chelsea side, that started grinding out wins slowly and methodically.

Whether it was due to fatigue, critical injuries or suspensions or teams adapting to their style of play, Chelsea fell out of the attacking rhythm they had developed in the first few months of the season.

But Mourinho knows how to get results, and he set his team out to win, and win they did. Consistently, methodically, one game at a time. It is this consistency that saw Chelsea win the league. The team were top of the league since day 1, and lost only twice all season, freak results that no one really saw coming. Some weak refereeing in big games meant Chelsea had to settle for draws with the big teams instead of wins, but those results ended up working out in Chelsea’s favour anyway.

But it was crucial wins against Everton, QPR, West Ham and Hull that saw Chelsea pull ahead of Manchester City, who had drawn level on points with Chelsea in January when the team lost 5-3 to Tottenham of all teams (Shocking right?). But as the second half of the season wore on, Chelsea pulled away from City again, creating another big gap in points.

It is typical of Mourinho sides, but this Chelsea side just know how to win. Whenever a goal was needed, someone stepped up and provided it. Whenever a good defensive performance was needed, the team dug in, rolled up their sleeves and got the job done.

Whenever a big a game was played in the league, Chelsea focused and kept their shape, using counter attacks to devastating effect. Nice performances are great, but wins are what matter, and Chelsea developed a knack of getting those 3 points every game, somehow, someway. That’s how champions are made, and that’s how champions stay at the top.

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People have drawn comparisons between this Chelsea squad and Mourinho’s first Chelsea squad, and there are some: A physical, dynamic center forward, a hit squad of pacy, intelligent and dynamic attacking midfielders, a gigantic midfield enforcer, a settled back 4, and a young keeper who is also one of the top 3 in the world right now.

However the similarities end there.

Chelsea 2014/2015 Squad Dynamics

Mourinho’s first Chelsea squad was essentially a bludgeon, a war hammer, that could just grind teams down and wear them out. It wasn’t pretty, but it was consistent, and it got results. No team could outfight Chelsea, outlast them, outjump them, or outrun them. It relied on raw power to defend and attack. This Chelsea side rely more on speed, trickery and fluid interchange of positions when attacking, and high-intensity pressing at pace in defense – the scalpel as opposed to the hammer.

While the current version may not be as defensively ruthless as the first Mourinho Chelsea side, it is still menacing, just in its own way. This season so far, Chelsea has kept 17 clean sheets, and conceded 27 goals, the fewest in the league. In attack, they are the second highest scoring team, with only Manchester City ahead of them in that regard. And they accomplished this while only using 22 players, the fewest of any team in the premier league.

Mourinho doesn’t rotate or change often, and once he has a settled side, he sticks with it. But here too lies the problem this season, that perhaps this squad burned out, as the same players were being used too often. The Champions League exit against PSG, particularly the second leg, saw the players looking drained even before the game had reached half time. It was lethargic, slow, plodding.

Elimination from the competition helped the players rest more, as there were now fewer games. While Chelsea took strides to add to both the starting XI and the depth, more players are needed in the summer to add more depth and dimension to the squad. This is particularly the case for the central midfield and attacking midfield positions. Chelsea shipped off Salah and Schurrle in January, and brought in Cuadrado for 30 million pounds.

Thus far, I have not been impressed by Cuadrado, and his limited game time suggest Mourinho doesn’t trust him yet either. Oscar was brilliant in the first half of the season, as always, and then promptly stopped being good once January rolled around. We need more quality depth here, so that injuries, fatigue or suspensions don’t cripple our attack, especially given that the side is heavily reliant on Hazard. In central midfield, quality cover is needed for both Fabregas and Matic – players who can both defend competently and distribute the ball with accuracy and ambition. Ramires is better in a 3 man midfield as a box-to-box player, and is hampered by the 2 man midfield pivot, though he is useful cover.

Mikel is a good defensive option, but the lack of appearances this season suggests he might be on his way out this summer. This does not mean a shopping spree, but rather a few shrewd acquisitions to tweak the squad.

One thing that still bothered me this season was that we struggled to score goals when we shouldn’t have. One cause of this is simply that our players can’t finish chances. Hazard or Fabregas might create brilliant chances, but no one can finish them. The other is that our attacking players just don’t shoot the ball enough. I’m reminded here of the winning goal Willian scored against Everton, in stoppage time.

Willian has a great shot, but rarely uses it. Ditto for both Oscar. Hazard shoot probably be shooting more as well, though he scores different kinds of goals. Too often the squad tries to walk the ball into the net when they could just shoot the ball when in a good goal scoring position.

A final thought here, and this will be really cheesy, but Chelsea players just seem to be at home here. I don’t know if that is the case for other teams, but watching them play, watching them in the media, watching Mourinho in interviews, you get the feeling that everyone at the club is there because they love the crest on their shirt, they love the club, they love the fans. Mourinho looks so at ease now, because he is home, he is at his club, the club he was meant for, and he has the backing of everyone.

The players love it here, and haven’t set their eyes on other pastures, because Chelsea is a place to be, it is a place to belong. And I love that this culture still exists, that new players have to in a sense buy into the the club and what it means, and I hope that continues.

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In the 2014/2015 season Chelsea did not get anywhere near the number of penalties they deserved, this season it will not matter as the league has been won with something to spare but in future seasons it could be decisive.

Think I am being paranoid? Then take the recent Arsenal game, Chelsea were denied two penalties during the game that left little to be argued, a draw for Chelsea was enough to set up the league at Crystal palace but Chelsea were denied two points that on other occasions could be decisive.

Goals win matches and the penalty spot is almost an absolute lock with Eden Hazard as the lead penalty taker, therefore the denial of penalties in games big and small could be the difference between a title and a near miss in the future.

A Campaign Against Chelsea?

 

The number of non-calls this season was appalling, and disgusting. I don’t know if there is a campaign against Chelsea or not, but this needs to stop. I lost count of the number of times this season Chelsea should have been fairly awarded a spot kick, and didn’t get it. What made it worse was the number of times Chelsea players were booked for simulation for clear penalties, you are not going to get every decision but to get accused of cheating on top of not getting the penalty is ridiculous.

Will It Change Next Season

The refereeing this season across the Premier League but Mourinho has painted a target on the club’s back by being so outspoken about the poor decisions he felt Chelsea have received, referees do not take kindly to this so I would not expect a renaissance in refereeing anytime soon.

I hope next season referees actually award penalties to Chelsea when they are deserved and we get better rub of the green.

 

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