Following a recent horrendous dip in form, it appears that Chelsea are now out of the title race. It even looks as if it will be a challenge to secure a top-four finish and Champions League football next year. With an ageing squad, poor performance, a loss of confidence publically admitted by Frank Lampard and apparent in-fighting and dressing room unrest, it seems that all is not well at Stamford Bridge. Is the Roman empire crumbling?
With the emergence, or more to the point, lack of emergence of such players as Daniel Sturridge, the role of outgoing Sporting Director Frank Arnesen has come into question. The claim that Chelsea’s success has been built on massive overspending and shaky foundations was answered with the appointment of Arnesen, but as the Dane looks to leave at the end of the season, has he achieved his aim? There doesn’t appear to be many players coming through at Chelsea and they still seem to concentrate more on buying ready-made players rather than developing new, home-grown talent.
The latest in the line of possible acquisitions are the targets David Luiz of Benfica and Ajax’s Gregory van der Wiel. Arnesen stated that the focus was on a defender, preferably one at centre-back to cover the injured Alex, and not to buy players such as Steven Pienaar.
Both Luiz and van der Wiel are hot property, talented defenders and while Luiz is more a physical player, in van der Wiel they could get one of the premier attacking right backs in the world. The moves look like taking place possibly in January or more than likely, the summer but while they could both improve Chelsea’s squad and first team no end, has the damage already been done in West London? With the departure of Arnesen, is the future bleak for Chelsea? Or will his failure to bring through young talent be remedied by the next man? Ray Wilkins is currently looking for a job…
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