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Everything posted by Superblue_1986

  1. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    A loan move for Tomori as part of the deal could be a good move for all parties involved.
  2. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    Ironically I think Cahill would have found himself playing regularly this season, particularly as the season wore on as his leadership and experience would have anchored the defence. It would have still been far from perfect but I think the likes of Zouma or Rudiger would have benefited playing alongside him. Somebody like Lewis Dunk wouldn't be the worst option. It's not a flashy signing but it could be a sensible one, somebody who is a defender first and foremost and I think would be willing to stand up with the personality to lead and organise a back line embarrassingly short of such characteristics. It could be similar to United's purchase of Maguire. He is ridiculously overpriced, but his presence in United's defence has improved it. If it's another player we're going to be quoted a ridiculous figure for like £50m + then it's too much. But at a reasonable price, I wouldn't be against it.
  3. Super Frank Thread

    Agreed on next season. The target, in my opinion, should be looking to add 10-15 points on this season. When you think we got one point from a possible twelve against West Ham and Bournemouth, I think that is a very realistic aim and should keep us in the top 4 places whilst pushing closer to the top of the table. Whilst defensively we have problems, I think a large part of our problems against the teams in the bottom half this season has been our inability to convert a raft of chances we've created against them and in many circumstances we've been routinely punished off one or two chances for them. Hopefully this is something that the new signings will address next season with additional creativity and goal threat because our record this season against teams in the top half has been pretty reasonable. People have mentioned we've been lucky getting top 4 this season with our points total but it shouldn't be compared to previous years. We're nowhere near as good a team as we have been in previous years and a number of teams have been catching up over time. There's no longer a huge gulf between us, United, Spurs and Arsenal compared to the likes of Wolves and Leicester. The league table never lies, and this season us and United have proved good enough for top 4. Maybe next season an extra 10 points will only just be enough for top 4 or maybe it moves us further away from the pack. Who knows?
  4. Super Frank Thread

    You learn something every day! I think the biggest thing this season for Lampard was getting through it. Lots of people outside the club, pundits, opposition fans, had us around mid table. I think a few of our own fans probably did too (I personally felt if we remained in the top 6 it would have been acceptable given the circumstances). Now though is where the pressure cranks up because it looks like we'll spend big. The club is trusting Lampard to use those funds wisely and start rebuilding a squad which has needed a real refresh for a long time. I think there have been signs this season of him becoming a top manager. We at least one, beat all the top teams this season and have had some really excellent results and performances. But there have also been times where Lampard has been outdone tactically and made to look the somewhat rookie coach that he is. Those inconsistencies have to be drastically reduced next season for us to continue to progress. Either way though, I feel the opportunities he has given to academy players has put some on the road to hopefully making it at Chelsea, and opening the door in the future to more coming through (with or without Lampard) and the signings look highly promising and with the long term in mind, no longer short term stopgaps. This feels like the start of something. Hopefully Lampard can develop like the team and prove up to being the one to lead it.
  5. Super Frank Thread

    Agree on the first part. It's not just the players. Lampard currently is inconsistent himself tactically and we've suffered at times this season as a result. That has to improve, and I would like to believe that bringing in his own players next season to play what is hopefully going to be in his own image and preferred system will allow us to become more focused specifically (both players and coaching) rather than the regular changing that has been done this season. Don't agree on the second part. Hazard's output last season accounted for around 50% of our goals in the league. To lose that quality without being able to adequately replace it was going to be a huge problem. Our overall record without Hazard might be pretty good i don't know, but the overall quality in our squad has reduced over his time here. Players like Mata, Costa, Fabregas, Pedro were either left to decline or not sufficiently replaced and last season I felt was a boiling point whereby we were fully reliant on Hazard to carry us through the season, because there was very little to support him. I feel getting through this season without him was a huge thing. And hopefully the recruitment this summer will be spot on. The signs are encouraging that we're no longer settling and instead moving for the best that are available and attainable.
  6. Willian

    Lampard said after the game that he pulled up in training on Friday. That's all we can base it on for now. If that theory was true however, I would be disappointed that Willian couldn't be trusted to put everything in for Chelsea. After all, there is a trophy and medal opportunity to add to his collection. One which at his stage of his career, may not present itself again. I can remember us agreeing to sell Brian Laudrup to Copenhagen before playing them in Europe and he still played and scored the goal to knock them out. In my opinion you give your all for your team that you are contracted to, no matter the circumstances. There are no excuses for anything less.
  7. Super Frank Thread

    I was supportive of the idea of giving Lampard the job last summer, mainly because I felt with the loss of Hazard and the transfer ban it was a complete free hit for someone to come in who cares about the club and I'd expect to be prepared to lay down a long term plan for the club which would involve trying to integrate some of our youth players to freshen up the squad. Some of them the jury is still out but 2 or 3 of them will definitely carry on playing regularly into next season and beyond, and very likely 2 or 3 more will at the very least be squad players. That's a huge bonus moving forward for the club. None of them are at the level they need to be yet to be challenging for the league but a year under their belts will help on the way to that. Somebody like Rashford seems to be getting lots of headlines this season but he's been around the United first team for 4-5 years and is only really now going up a level. I think Lampard placing faith in a number of them at times throughout the season will be a long term benefit to the club. To get top 4 I think was the absolute peak of what we as fans could have expected this year having lost our best player, and arguably the best player in the league. So just on a basic overall of the season I think Lampard has done a good job and achieved. However make no mistake, next season we do need to improve. Even if they don't make many signings, I would expect Arsenal and Spurs to improve next season with a full season of their managers. Wolves have been there or thereabouts for two seasons now and if they can add one or two, there's nothing to suggest they won't be again. And United I expect will kick on based on their form in the second half of the season as opposed to the first. We've been consistently inconsistent throughout the season. It was enough this year, but it won't be next. I like the signings that Lampard has made and the Havertz potential signing could be a huge one. The presence of Lampard as manager seems to have been a great pull for all of them too which could be a big thing moving forward in our recruitment. I don't think Werner or Havertz would have been viewed as attainable targets a few months ago but the uncertainty of times and Lampard seemingly a very persuasive influence has presented an opportunity that the club look to be taking. These three signings will hopefully address one issue in our team that we're not clinical enough, especially against teams in the bottom half of the table which is a big reason why we've dropped silly points. Lampard now has to address that defence with at least a couple of signings. And then there are a number of aspects of his coaching that need to be worked on. Particularly the defensive shape when we have the ball (because we always look susceptible to the counter) and defending set pieces. Maybe it's possible to develop a more solid shape next season if we have a better crop of attacking players. Sarri was able to do this in the second half of his season with Hazard in the team to bail out a toothless attack. But with the players coming in, we should have as strong a midfield and attack than we've had in years. I don't mind Lampard being versatile also, but like others have mentioned, I think he needs to decide on what his primary formation and set up is going to be and predominantly stick with that moving forward. I think it will be a 4-3-3 with a more defensive minded midfielder and two 'number 8's' but that remains to be seen. He's chopped and changed a lot this season and has seemed to overthink at times. He's in a difficult spot because we have a lot of players in the squad that have been brought under Conte to suit a back 3 system when I think he wants to use a back 4 moving forward. Sarri had the same problem last season. But that is something he needs to address with the personnel at the club. I think there is a ruthless streak there in him because lots of players have been dropped and/or hooked this season and he must show that this summer in the market. I think if Lampard fails to address certain problems that we can all see from this last season in the transfer market, or does look to address them in the market and they are still apparent next season, then there will be a lot of questions asked of him and whether he'll be the right man to take us forward. I think for this season though, and given that we managed top 4 under testing circumstances, he can be given a large benefit of the doubt. But that won't be the case next year, and strides will need to be made.
  8. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    Maybe but Conte has always been one that wants a big pool of players to choose from if they're in multiple competitions. He also seems to prefer players that he's already worked with previously too, making it more seamless to fit into his system. It'd be interesting how much each club values those players at. N'dombele, for me, given the money spent on him has probably been the biggest flop in the league this season and there's surely no way Spurs feel they can recoup full value back on what they originally signed him for. So what would that value Skriniar at?
  9. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    Cash + Emerson + Moses to hijack? Or chuck Bakayoko in too if Conte still likes him.
  10. Kai Havertz

    I know there is a pull with them because they are such a huge club, but any top player with half a brain at the moment would surely think twice about going to Barcelona. There is no direction at the club and they've essentially tried pushing for one last hurrah whilst Messi is still capable. An old team that have spent fortunes, but still reliant on one player time and again to produce the goods.
  11. Your Chelsea FC Memories

    Agreed. I love the success and great players we've had in the Abramovich era, but some of my favourite memories are growing up watching Chelsea in the 90's. In awe at Gullit and then Zola joining the club. Going with my dad to Wembley at 10 years old to watch the 97 cup final win. And a pair of incredible comebacks which still stick clear in my head to this day, and ultimately led to silverware in both instances. The 4-2 win over Liverpool in the FA Cup when 2 down at half time and the 3-2 aggregate win over Vicenza in the Cup Winners Cup after being 2-0 down mid way through the second leg. Magic times.
  12. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    All the talk of Dean Henderson, what do people think about United's other keeper Sergio Romero? I can't say I've watched enough of him to pass judgement but a couple of my friends are United fans and rate him highly and feel he should have played a lot more than he's been afforded over the last couple of years during De Gea's slump. If we were going to go down the route of an older, experienced keeper (think he's 33) for a couple of years who shouldn't cost a huge amount (think he may be going into the last year of his contract), he might be one to throw on the list?
  13. Non-Chelsea Transfer Pub

    I don't think anybody would dispute how good a player Carvalho was. But the leadership of Terry was critical for our success defensively. We won premier league titles and multiple cups with Terry as the back bone of the side. Whether it was Carvalho, Gallas, Alex, Cahill the common trend was Terry. I always felt that when Terry was in his prime we would almost always have a solidity in the defence no matter the partner he had alongside him. I would look currently at that Liverpool defence and in my opinion if you cherry picked any of Gomez, TAA or Robertson and put them in our side i don't think it would make much difference to our team as a defensive unit. Put Van Dijk however in our team to lead the defence and it would automatically raise the game of the rest. Honestly I struggle to give transfer targets for centre back currently because I think so few nowadays offer that (Van Dijk is an excellent player but i think he's lauded even more so because the pool of world class centre backs around now is not what it was 10-20 years ago). But we need someone to lead and organise our defence. Ake for me, may be an upgrade on Christensen or Zouma, etc but he's still the secondary centre back that they are. We need a primary centre back to come in and elevate everyone around them.
  14. Non-Chelsea Transfer Pub

    The hair and Dutch connection are obvious factors, but Gullit did play sweeper in a back three at Chelsea so for Chelsea fans who watched Gullit here there is probably a bit more of a comparison as they are similar positions on the pitch. I do think comparing Ake to Gullit though is a ridiculous reach. I think it's understated just how good Gullit was during his short stint at Chelsea. That first season before he transitioned to player manager he came into the league supposedly too old and washed up with two duff knees and made everything look so easy. He was easily one of the best players in the league still and could have comfortably played for a better team than Chelsea at the time. Having started watching Chelsea for maybe 2-3 years before Gullit joined, I can only assume for me suddenly watching Gullit in Chelsea's team was like people moving from a black and white to a colour TV. Top player and as a side note I love his affection for the club despite a relatively short stay in the twilight of his career, particularly given the enormous success he enjoyed.
  15. Conor Gallagher

    I think a Premier League loan next season would be good for him. We're stacked in midfield and he would get lost in the shuffle. His performances in the Championship this season would suggest he can transition to one of the teams in the lower half of the Premier League. His versatility too should help him get regular game time. Over the next couple of seasons he'll want to look at locking down a more specific position to become more specialist but for the time being it's just important to be playing regularly.
  16. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    A number of those were or have been loaned out in recent times so it would be interesting to know if teams have covered their wages in full or been supplemented by us. I'm pretty sure we had to cover a good proportion of Drinkwater's wages when he went out on loan but I would expect the likes of Zappacosta, Bakayoko and Moses we wouldn't be. With the new loan rules coming into place some players will need to be sold rather than loaned out. Of that list I would say Kepa , Baba and Drinkwater are the most difficult ones to be shifting. Kepa will be easy to loan out, but we'll do well to minimise our losses on him across transfer fee and wages. Batshuayi will depend on him, with the Euros next year he knows exactly where he stands at Chelsea so he either sees out his contract or he makes a loan or permanent move this coming season. I think there's a market in Italy for Zappacosta and Emerson. Moses is a bit of a specialist player because he's only ever excelled as a wing back but he had 2 very good years there for us not long ago and teams that play a wing back system may be prepared to take a punt on him. Barkley I think would be easy to move on if we put him up for sale, so long as he is prepared to move. Pretty much any team below us in the league he'd be playing regularly for and he has recently been first choice for the national team. Bakayoko despite how bad he was for us, is rated in both France and Italy so again i think there will be a market for him. The "book" value of this list won't be that high anymore with the exception of Kepa and Drinkwater. Most can be sold for pretty reasonable amounts without a loss for the purposes of the accounts.
  17. Kai Havertz

    We're banking on Havertz to become world class in much the same way that Hazard did whilst at Chelsea. He's not currently there yet, but I'd argue he's the best player in his position currently within his age category and the hope and expectation is that he'll realise that potential. If he does we'll have a serious player on our hands. I think it's too easy to think that if we sign him it suggests he's not as good as we believe because we've had a number of world class players at the club during the Abramovich era, but in the main they have developed to become world class whilst at Chelsea so there is nothing to say that Havertz wouldn't follow suit. If they are at the top of their game and prime of their career then I'd tend to agree because beyond perhaps Makelele and Ballack there probably isn't really anyone else we've signed who would fit in that bracket and they were both 15 years ago. Remember with Hazard he wanted specifically to come and play in England as his next move. There are a number of factors that could be swaying Havertz thinking - Premier League, London, German teammates, promising young group of players, Lampard as manager, etc. He could well have in his mind a move to Real, Barca, Bayern in a few seasons time much like Hazard. If he does then I'm fine with that because he will have had to have produced with us to get that move and so we'll reap the benefits.
  18. Willian

    I think where some consideration needs to come into play is what if the likes of Ziyech and (hopefully) Havertz take time to adapt and adjust to the league? Similarly Hudson Odoi still has a lot of development. I think it's a risk to just let Willian walk if there's the chance to keep him if others expected to replace him have teething problems. However we as a fan base view Willian, in my opinion he'd be first choice right winger still at every other club in the league bar Liverpool and City. So to have a player of that ilk within the squad shouldn't just be dismissed. He also offers a lot of experience which could be important. Some of the players being talked about leaving - Willian, Pedro, Jorginho, Alonso, Giroud are amongst our most experienced players in the group and sometimes that needs to be leaned on just like Lampard did in the latter stages of this season. I would not want to simply let too many of them go all at once. Another factor to consider is the condensed schedule we'll face next season. It will be tiring and gruelling to challenge on multiple fronts and we need the squad for it. Being able to use 5 subs still will allow Lampard far greater flexibility to use and rotate the squad and having numbers will be important (especially considering Pulisic and Hudson Odoi have had injury issues and Ziyech will be first year in the league). I think it's already benefited us since lock down having a strong bench to call upon. Willian hasn't shown any deterioration in his physical attributes yet and hopefully being part of a rotation of the attacking players can keep him fresh and fit at that level for a while longer. 3 years will be too much in my opinion given his age, but I'd have no problem giving him a 2 year contract still.
  19. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    Yes, I mentioned on a different post the other day our track record with Spanish players is very weird. There's no middle ground. The differences have always been the mental side of the game too. The ones mentally strong like Azpi, Pedro, Fabregas have been successful and particularly in the former two's case Pedro struggled first season and Fabregas initially was cast out by Conte. They went through similar trials and tribulations to the likes of Torres, Morata and Kepa who have just broken apart through fragile mindsets and complete lack of confidence.
  20. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    I can remember your comments on Bulka too. I don't think the club expected Courtois to go on strike. I think they felt he would be prepared to see out his contract if necessary. Having said that, we probably wouldn't have had the chance to sign Kovacic presented to us off the back of the Courtois deal. I think when Courtois did go on strike, and offers for Alisson and Oblak didn't materialise, we shouldn't have gone so high on a keeper, particularly one still very unproven. If the club weren't prepared to roll with Bulka, we should have just looked at a short term solution at the time and re-assessed things thereafter. Obviously we can only speculate but it did feel like Kepa was such a left field signing that there was an element of panic to it.
  21. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    My original post was probably worded wrong because as you said, none of it can be established as a matter of fact. I agree with you on the point of buying Oblak and not improving other areas. If we're looking at Oblak and the defence then fine, but if Oblak meant no other additions then we should definitely be looking at using that money to get a keeper and centre back rather than just one. i don't agree on the last point though. I try to look as positive as possible on most things but I think Kepa is that poor of a keeper that having him in goal is such a huge liability that no amount of defensive improvements will be enough until he is replaced.
  22. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    Kepa definitely isn't fully at fault. Defensively we're not good enough. I feel that all of our centre backs are in a decent/good level but not a great level. We have good depth in the position but all of them are effectively secondary centre backs. We need one primary centre back who anchors and leads the back line. All of the above centre backs I think are capable of being the partner and all have different strengths that can be utilised in different situations. Having that depth too allows us the opportunity to use a back 3 in certain situations. But I still believe when assessing a number of goals this season, Kepa is at fault more than any other player: 1. A commanding goalkeeper makes a huge difference to the set piece situation. A keeper capable of dealing with, say 75% of balls in between the width of the goalposts and out to the penalty spot, eliminates a lot of the chaos. 2. Kepa's save and expected goals against stats are damning. He lacks fundamentals that he won't suddenly gain as he gets older. He doesn't make glaring mistakes like the ones De Gea made last week but I look at probably at least 70-80% of the goals we concede thinking that he probably should have done better. That isn't just this season either, it's last season too. If it came down to replacing Kepa or buying a new centre back, it would be replacing Kepa first and foremost for me.
  23. Chelsea Transfer Pub

    A high quality goalkeeper will save you points throughout the season. Liverpool likely would have won the league this season with Kepa because they were so far ahead of everyone else but they wouldn't have accrued the amount of points they did. And in my opinion a better keeper would have had us in a comfortable third position, not fourth. I think you can get by with a competent goalkeeper. That is where I would place someone like De Gea at the moment who makes a share of great saves, makes a share of bad mistakes but ultimately does most of the basics to a sufficient standard the majority of the time. Our problem is that Kepa isn't in the competent bracket. Although there have still been errors in the backline, in my opinion the shape of the team from a defensive perspective has improved through the season compared to the all out attack, gung ho nature of the opening games of the season. However that may not have necessarily reflected in the amount of goals conceded. Kepa causes carnage to our defence. Not being prepared or dominant to come for any corners or wide free kicks presents a massive problem defending them because the defence have to naturally then defend deeper to compensate. Similarly in open play having a keeper that the defence can trust breeds confidence to them. I don't think anyone has confidence that Kepa will save any shots at present which is a huge issue. Kepa is not solely to blame and won't completely fix our defence. There are still other things that need to be worked on both from a coaching perspective and possibly a recruitment one too. And you have allow that keepers will make a few mistakes through the year, even the top ones do. However in Kepa's case where it's not so much glaring mistakes, but instead fundamental deficiencies in his game. A better keeper in my opinion would make an immediate significant difference to the goals against column and in doing so, likely add a few points to our total. It doesn't have to be huge money like Oblak but it is absolutely vital we address the position this summer because for me, it's far more important to sort out now than left and centre back.
  24. Super Frank Thread

    It does however feel like there has been a shift in levels of patience over the last few years, even if that hasn't necessarily reflected in managers staying long. Conte and Sarri both had some real difficult periods where in previous years I think a decision would have been made mid-season, but the club persevered with them. Conte caused his position to become untenable himself by being difficult to work with (he's had problems with the board now everywhere he's been as it sounds like there are murmurings of discontent at Inter now as well). Sarri resigned from his post to join Juventus. We don't know if the club would have stuck with him if this hadn't have happened, but they didn't let fan unrest mid season influence them. i think in Lampard the club knows they have someone who is perfect for them outside of the success on the pitch. He's a club legend and his successful playing career provides excellent marketing opportunities, he represents the club perfectly, speaks well, has a superb relationship with the media and besides this little spat with Klopp, which is something of nothing, there's no controversy with him. What appears to be an excellent working relationship with the board and Marina makes a huge difference too. Compared to other manager's, he also is prepared to do what's right for the club and not just himself, so there is a longer term plan there of bringing through academy players and the players being signed younger, long term and versatile acquisitions compared to the experienced, short term signings Mourinho and Conte would target, or players like Jorginho who was specific for Sarri's style but isn't very versatile to adapt to a very different way of playing or manager. Of course, it's a results business and now that Chelsea look like they'll go big this summer in the market, there will be more pressure next season on Lampard to continue to deliver on expectations but I do believe the club will be prepared to be patient with him and still give him time to implement what he's trying to do at the club. For me personally, if we can bring a couple of quality additions in defensively and so long as our new attacking signings do well, mixed with what we already have, I think we should be looking to add 10 - 15 points next season and show improvements on the defensive side of our game. That, for me, will have us closer to the top 2, and be laying a solid foundation for title challenges over the coming years.
  25. Super Frank Thread

    I like that Lampard hasn't over celebrated top 4. It is an excellent season considering where we are currently, but his comments show how much further he wants to get to and doesn't want just top 4 to be the benchmark for Chelsea.