The Chelsea fans in the Transfer Tavern are expecting a few big changes at Stamford Bridge this summer. After the success of last season, the Blues are struggling at present this term, with their chances of retaining their Premier League title now as good as over after losing another game on Wednesday.
Antonio Conte, then, clearly has his work cut out between now and the end of the season as he looks to maximise Chelsea’s success this term. However, his work won’t end if Chelsea achieve their goal of a top-four finish – if he stays at the club – as he has a few major decisions on his hands over the summer.
Clearly, given their mixed form this season, Chelsea’s squad could do with a shake-up, which could mean a few players move on, and a few others come in.
It’s interesting to speculate on that topic, and that’s exactly what Evening Standard journalist Aishali Bhardwa has been doing. Indeed, according to Bhardwa, the long-term future of two Chelsea players will need to be up for debate this summer.
She said: “Chelsea have plenty of options in defence at the moment, but they must decide whether to extend the deals for David Luiz and Gary Cahill, seek out a younger defender to buy or recall Kurt Zouma back to the first team”.
It’s that first point that makes for perhaps the most significant discussion. Both David Luiz and Gary Cahill have been mainstays in the Chelsea first team squad when available this term, and particularly in the case of the latter, he has been involved in the Chelsea first team for a number of years. Bhardwa, though, clearly feels as though it’s time to discuss whether the duo deserves to stay at the club long-term.
It must be said that neither player has enjoyed as much success this term as they have in the past. Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen have often been preferred in their places, and that does seem to hint at somewhat of a changing of the guard for the Blues.
Nonetheless, the final decision will be with the Chelsea manager – whoever that may be come summer time – and the Blues’ board.
It’s an interesting topic of debate. It’s fair to say that neither are likely to be first choice defenders for much longer, and so their futures should certainly come under scrutiny.
As club captain, you’d think that Gary Cahill will continue to be involved, though his form has had a stark decrease this term, whilst David Luiz’s misgivings with Antonio Conte have been well-documented.
How this one plays out is anyone’s guess.
Chelsea fans – thoughts?
Let us know below!
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