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Transfer Talk and Team News – Chelsea FC

 Posted by on June 2, 2014 at 9:53 pm  Blogs/Media
Jun 022014



Screenshot 2014 06 02 21.43.00 Transfer Talk and Team News Chelsea FC

David Luiz made a £50m move to PSG from Chelsea earlier this month, making him the world’s most expensive defender. [Getty]


Let’s do some math: add up a third place finish, a glory-hungry manager and a billionaire owner.  Then, multiply that by the sale of the most expensive defender ever and a changing of the guard – add up the total.  What you get is a club motivated to pull out all of the stops in order to begin the 2014-15 season with the best squad possible and all but guarantee the accumulation of silverware.

Chelsea have already begun the moving and shakings at the club, as David Luiz was sold to Paris Saint-Germain for a whopping £50m – a record transfer among defenders.  Many believe that Mourinho was considering offloading the Brazilian since his return to Stamford Bridge ahead of last season.  Both David Luiz and Juan Mata were rumored to be at the top of the list of those players with whom Mourinho was willing to part.  It seems those rumors were true – Juan Mata left Chelsea in the January transfer window, becoming Manchester United’s most expensive transfer ever.

While the departures of veterans Ashley Cole and Frank Lampard are all but certain, fellow veteran and long-time teammate John Terry has accepted a pay-cut to sign a one-year extension with the Blues.  It is no secret that the time for Chelsea’s old guard has come, but Mourinho seems keen to squeeze all of the quality he can out of them.  Both Terry and Lampard have been linked to management positions within the structure of the club when they do retire from professional play, but neither has specified when that might be.

Chelsea have already secured the signature of the impressive Kurt Zouma, a center back who they purchased and loaned back to his Ligue 1 club, Saint Etienne this past January..  The Guardian named Zouma in their  list of the top 10 most promising players in European football in January 2014.  They are also chasing the signature of Eliaquim Mangala, a highly rated center back plying his trade for Porto.  The Blues will have some competition in their pursuit of the French defender, as Manchester City have had their eyes on him for quite some time.  Chelsea do have a promising youth prospect in Thomáš Kalas, who many see as a legitimate successor to John Terry.  Kalas featured in Chelsea’s memorable road win at Liverpool late in the season, partnering Branislav Ivanovic to great effect, and should have scored.  Chelsea have also been closely monitoring English youngster Luke Shaw, who has been a revelation at Southampton.

The acquisition of a reliable left back would allow César Azpilicueta to return to his natural position on the right.  However, his relegation of Ashley Cole to the bench as showed the Spaniard’s versatility and he made the left back position his own for the majority of the season.  Indeed, many would say that Azpilicueta was Chelsea’s most reliable player.

In midfield, Chelsea will be encouraged by Nemanja Matic’s availability in all competitions, after the Serb missed out on competing for the Champions League with the Blues as he was cup-tied by Benfica.  The Guardian are reporting that Chelsea will submit a bid for out-of-favor Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas.  Despite speculation linking him with former team Arsenal, the Gunners stated they would not be pursuing the £30m Spanish technician and Chelsea lead the list of possible suitors which includes Manchester City and Manchester United.  Rumors have also been surrounding John Obi Mikel, who rarely featured for José’s Blues this past season.  The Nigerian defensive midfielder will certainly have suitors and he will most likely be leaving for Inter Milan as per Simon Johnson of the London Evening Standard.  To add fuel to the transfer rumor fire, Chelsea have also been linked with Tottenham Hotspurs’ Brazilian midfielder Paulinho.  If Chelsea are to part ways with Mikel and Luiz, who often featured as a holding midfielder despite his label as a defender, they will certainly need to look for solid replacements.

One area in which Chelsea have an abundance of talent is in attacking midfield.  Players will Willian, Oscar, Hazard and Schürrle – arguably Chelsea’s most reliable players in this position – will undoubtedly be fighting to cement their starting spots.  They will certainly have competition in players like newcomer Mohamed Salah, who failed to find his feet in his first half season at the bridge.  Mourinho will undoubtedly expect more from the young Egyptian, who impressed against the Blues with Basel when they faced off in the group stages of this season’s Champions League.  Mourinho has a penchant for players who excel against his teams, and Salah did not escape his gaze.  Unfortunately, the former Basel man has yet to show his true talents in the Chelsea colors and expectations will be high for him this upcoming season.  Chelsea also have a slew of loanees making their returns to London – among them Victor Moses, Marko Marin, Romelu Lukaku and possibly, Thibaut Courtois – looking for guarantees about 1st team playing time and their importance to the club.

José Mourinho lamented the ineffectiveness of his current strike force more than once this season, citing the lack of quality upfront as the reason for Chelsea’s woes.  Indeed, despite having an impressive defensive record, Chelsea were lacking in firepower, as Samuel Eto’o, Fernando Torres and Demba Ba managed to score less than 30 league goals between them.  If not for scoring contributions from midfielders like Hazard and Oscar, Chelsea might have been looking over their shoulders at 4th place Arsenal.     Mourinho has also stated his desire for strong replacements in key positions, and with the money gained from the Luiz and Mata sales, this could very well see a few new faces at Cobham come August.

According to multiple sources, Diego Costa has all but completed a £31.5 move from Atletico Madrid to the English capital, which could see the departure of Demba Ba, Fernando Torres or both.  Samuel Eto’o was released by Chelsea on a free transfer – to the surprise of few, considering the negative comments made of him by his manager and vice versa – but Ba and Torres could be fighting it out for a spot during preseason.  Chelsea have also been linked with PSG strikers Edinson Cavani and Ezequiel Lavezzi amid assumptions that one of them will be surplus to requirements in the upcoming season.  Mourinho has made it clear that striker is a position he intends to improve dramatically, citing it as one of the reasons for Chelsea’s failures this season.  Expect a big-name forward, or two, to be joining the Blues’ ranks this August.

[Note: Many rumors discussed in the last few weeks will not come to fruition (they're rumors, after all), but be sure to check back for another update come the end of June.  In World Cup years, some clubs prefer to make pre-Cup transfer deals in order to secure signings before players feature in the major tournament.  However, players who excel in the tournament usually have inflated fees for those would-be buyers who decide to wait until after the tournament to court the players on their wish-lists.]

Amadi Thiam

Senegalese-American journalism student. Fan of political science & international relations. Strong passion for writing about and playing the beautiful game. Bilingual. Recovering Drogbaholic. Licensed Youth Coach. I call it football, futbol and soccer. Follow me on twitter: @amadoit Find me on Soccerly at More of my writings:

  One Response to “Transfer Talk and Team News – Chelsea FC”

  1. […] Silva [the two of them will also be teammates in the 2014-2015 season at Paris Saint-Germain after Luiz was lured away from Chelsea by the French champions for a cool £50 million - a record fee for a defender.]  Brazil also possess an almost unmatched […]

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