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Tomo

Chelsea Transfer Pub

Started by Tomo,

10,871 posts in this topic
3 minutes ago, Vesper said:

I posted the link above, I made a topic for Gravenberch a year and a half ago

you replied to the post with the link in it

Yes, i've read that topic. He only been in the starting eleven for a handful of times. Most of that data is based of performances in the second league, the Keuken Kampioen Division. This league is a mixture of a professionals and amateurs, the average wage of these players is €2000 per month. This division can make a decent player look like the next big star.

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4 minutes ago, Vincent said:

Yes, i've read that topic. He only been in the starting eleven for a handful of times. Most of that data is based of performances in the second league, the Keuken Kampioen Division. This league is a mixture of a professionals and amateurs, the average wage of these players is €2000 per month. This division can make a decent player look like the next big star.

like you said, time will tell who is right

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Ask Antonio Conte why it was that Chelsea were unable to build on the Premier League title success of 2017 and it is fair to assume the Italian will not point to himself.

In fact, Conte would not only blame that summer for Chelsea losing their advantage but would also point to the January 2018 transfer window as having a transformative effect on Liverpool.

Conte had earmarked Virgil van Dijk as one of his primary targets after winning the League at the end of his first season as Chelsea head coach and was confident the club would land the Dutchman for him.

Liverpool had finished fourth that year, so Conte saw no reason as to why his club should not be able to see off their rival bid.

But Conte and perhaps Chelsea had not bargained on the persuasive powers of charismatic Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, who managed to convince Van Dijk in the summer of 2017 that Anfield should be his preferred destination.

It took another six months for Liverpool to land him, but Van Dijk eventually helped his new club to finish one place above Chelsea and qualify for the Champions League ahead of Chelsea at the end of the 2017/18 campaign.

From that moment, Chelsea have been playing catch up and now it rests on head coach Frank Lampard to plot how he can eventually claw back a deficit of more than 20 points to this season’s champions.

That may look a tall order, but it should be remembered that Conte’s Chelsea had finished 17 points ahead of Klopp’s Liverpool just three years ago and there have been encouraging signs that Chelsea have learned valuable lessons from the past.

Just as Klopp and sporting director Michael Edwards have succeeded in putting on a united front and working in close contact to land targets, Chelsea appear ready to benefit from rediscovering the art of joined up-thinking.

Conte famously switched his phone off for a large part of the summer of 2017 in a bid to force the club to deliver his targets, but Lampard’s approach, together with technical and performance advisor Petr Cech, has been far more inclusive and the relationship with director Marina Granovskaia is close.

Former team-mates Lampard and Cech did not especially fancy their chances when they made a secret pre-lockdown trip to Germany to meet Timo Werner, his agent and his family.

Liverpool and Manchester United had already spoken to Werner and his representatives, and the feeling around Chelsea was they were very much third in the queue.

But Cech managed to speak in Werner’s native German tongue to the forward’s agent and family, and Lampard, partly through the ex-goalkeeper, communicated his vision and passion for the club.

The talks paid dividends and, as Werner confirmed himself, Lampard and Cech did enough to convince him that Stamford Bridge was his preferred destination before Granovskaia worked fast to close a deal with RB Leipzig.

“Inter (Milan), Manchester United and Liverpool wanted me? Yes, I could have gone to these teams too,” Werner told Sportbuzzer. “The best clubs fought for me.

“The entire Chelsea package in the end, however, turned out to be the best in my career. Money played a marginal role. For me, money was never a decisive factor, otherwise I could have gone to China.

“Chelsea is a leading club in European football. There is a team of great quality, we want to get to the top. I don’t regret my decision for even a second.”

The signing of Werner also demonstrated that Chelsea have learned lessons from their own past and perhaps from Liverpool’s patience over clinching the Van Dijk deal.

In January, Lampard had been desperate to land a forward but Paris Saint-Germain and Napoli refused to negotiate over Edinson Cavani and Dries Mertens, while Erling Haaland chose Borussia Dortmund.

Previous managers and coaches had reacted to a failure to sign primary targets by pushing the club into taking gambles over more temporary options such as Radamel Falcao, Alexandre Pato and most recently Gonzalo Higuain.

Chelsea were offered the chance to sign former Newcastle United frontman Salomon Rondon in the dying hours of the January window, but they declined to panic and instead opted to wait until their top long-term targets became available.

Granovskaia received criticism from some fans at the end of the January window and yet the same supporters have once again been celebrating her negotiating skills ever since, following the deals for Werner and Hakim Ziyech back in February.

There are likely to be more signings as well, with the club poised to make a bid for Kai Havertz after Bayer Leverkusen failed to qualify for the Champions League and Leicester City left-back Ben Chilwell once the Premier League season finishes.

But Chelsea may have to follow Liverpool’s example once again if they are to overhaul them in the next few years and sign a new goalkeeper.

Record signing Kepa Arrizabalaga is clearly talented, but there remains a feeling that he is not top-class and Cech will know better than anybody that few teams win Premier League titles without one of the best goalkeepers.

While the signing of Van Dijk in many ways transformed Liverpool’s fortunes, it was not until Alisson Becker, who Chelsea had initially targeted, arrived that Klopp’s nearly men became winners.

There will no doubt be some lingering regret inside Stamford Bridge that Chelsea did not manage to replace Thibaut Courtois with Becker, rather than Kepa, two years ago and the club face another big decision over that position.

Chelsea would no doubt get along just fine by sticking with Kepa, but Lampard has made it clear that is not enough and to win trophies he may well have to sign a top-level replacement. Finding the right man would clearly present the biggest challenge but, in Cech, he has the perfect sounding board.

Granovskaia has also demonstrated she is ready to do everything in her power to back Lampard, which means Liverpool will be wary of a blue threat from outside Manchester in the coming years.

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The rise of Ben Chilwell: From accidental left-back to England’s first choice

https://theathletic.com/1547635/2020/06/28/ben-chilwell-leicester-england-chelsea-fa-cup-premier-league/

ben-chilwell-leicester-england-e1593372763909-1024x696.jpg

Among the 10 youthful faces on the page, there is one that stands out. Probably because the fresh face of Leicester City and England defender Ben Chilwell has hardly changed, apart from an occasional wisp of a beard, in the 17 years since he first began his journey from the rural fields of Milton Keynes to the more hallowed surrounds of the Premier League.

Chilwell, then aged just seven, is registered as number 9172 with Woburn Lions in the Milton Keynes and District Junior Football League, and former manager Keith Swan is so proud of the 2003 document, he has had it laminated, along with a player registration form containing the names of Chilwell’s very first team-mates.

Jack Grieveson, Peter Twitchen, Matthew Lowther, Simon Lawford, Thomas Dixon, Rory Hicks, Charlie Swan, George Cochrane-Davies and Samuel Whittaker can all proudly say they wore the claret and blue of Woburn & Wavendon FC alongside Chilwell, whose rise has seen him linked with Manchester City and Chelsea, and earned him 11 caps for England.

Chilwell has come a long way since those days with Woburn & Wavendon and there were slightly more illustrious names alongside his on the teamsheet on Sunday: Jamie Vardy. Youri Tielemans. Kasper Schmeichel.

The Athletic has reported how Frank Lampard is a big admirer of Chilwell and the Chelsea manager got a close-up view of the Leicester left-back’s talents at the King Power Stadium in Sunday’s FA Cup quarter-final. Chilwell was arguably Leicester’s best performer in their disappointing defeat, providing a good attacking outlet down the left for Brendan Rodgers’ side and stretching Chelsea’s defence with his pace. Chilwell’s energy also highlighted the lack of impact made by the Chelsea left-back Emerson Palmieri.


Swan, Chilwell’s manager at Woburn & Wavendon, says it wasn’t immediately obvious the seven-year-old Chilwell would go on to become a top professional footballer.

“He was a team player,” recalls Swan. “It wasn’t a case of, ‘Let’s give the ball to Ben and watch as he does something special with it for five minutes’ and after he scored, we start again. He was very much part of the group.

“He was quick to learn anything and very attentive with anything going on. We also had an hour a week training with a coach from (local then-League One club) Rushden & Diamonds as the Woburn chairman, Gregg Broughton, was also head of youth development with Rushden, and Ben always listened to what they were saying, soaking up information.

“He was one of the better players but not to a dramatic level. Across all the boys who were playing, he was the better player and it was reflected in the end-of-season awards. The kids voted for him as players’ player of the year at the end of the year. It was obvious, as time went on, he would go on to better things.

Ben Chilwell childhood
 
A seven-year-old Chilwell during his days with Woburn Lions in the Milton Keynes and District Junior Football League

“In fact, I remember, when he was aged about 11 and had moved to Rushden & Diamonds, he came to watch us play. After every game, to bond with the opposition, we would do a crossbar challenge — the boys would try to hit the crossbar. Ben asked to have a go. He hit it with his first try.”

Former Woburn team-mate and close friend Cochrane-Davies, who now lives in Nottingham and works as a graduate ecologist, says Chilwell was clearly a talent.

“I think we won our first ever game 23-0,” he tells The Athletic. “Ben scored 10 and I scored six or seven, I think. He had obviously been coached by his dad because while we were toe-poking it as kids, he was side-footing the ball.

“I thought he stood out among us but it was interesting to see him move from being a striker to a midfielder at Bletchley, and then Rushden, then to being a full-back at Leicester (Chilwell was asked to cover at left-back in his first game on trial at Leicester aged 12 and has remained in the position). Although, Ashley Cole was a hero of his. He talked about him a lot, so he was driven to emulate him.”

After just one year with Woburn, Chilwell moved on to Bletchley Youth to play an age group above himself, with the under-nines, and was then signed by Rushden. It was then that Swan thought Chilwell had a chance to go all the way.

“In all honesty I am devastated because when he first got signed up by Rushden I was standing on the touchline on a windswept day at Woburn and I said to the parents we should all put some money together and put it on him playing for England one day,” Swan recalls to The Athletic.

“The thought crossed our minds (that) he could go all the way. It was a ridiculous, throwaway comment but as he progressed, we thought we should have done the bet after all.

“I just think it is fantastic; just to know the path he has trodden and to keep an eye on his career is amazing. I can remember seeing him on TV in a FA Cup match against Tottenham and they said in commentary he was one to keep an eye on in the future. It gives you a warm glow to see how far he has come.”

Chilwell’s father Wayne, a New Zealander who had met his mother Sally while travelling and relocated to England over 25 years ago, was a driving force behind his son, and also Swan’s co-manager of that Woburn side. The pair volunteered when it seemed the fledgling club would not be formed as nobody had come forward to run it.

The Chilwells lived in Ridgmont, a small village south-east of Milton Keynes, and Chilwell, who has a younger sister, went to Ridgmont Lower School with many of his Woburn team-mates, including Cochrane-Davies, before graduating to Fulbrook Middle School and then Redborne Upper School.

After Leicester signed him when he was 12, he would be given time out from school to attend training twice a week. His father would take breaks from his job in the construction industry to drive him back and forth from training in Leicester. Chilwell was also attending cricket training sessions with Northamptonshire and even an England camp at Loughborough until he focused on football, which placed further demands on the family.

Chilwell has previously admitted that when he was 15 and struggling to be picked at Leicester, that he would have arguments with his dad on the hour-plus drive back to Ridgmont. Wayne would challenge him to double his efforts, resulting in Chilwell doing extra training in the fields around their rural home.

“Wayne is very focused and determined; all the attributes you need to have behind you to help you make the most of the talents you have,” says Swan. “I think his dad spent a lot of time with him and took him to a lot of summer soccer camps before we formed the team.

“He wasn’t hard on him, but he pushed him. He was determined to ensure Ben got the most out of all his talents.”

“I can understand how Ben has made it to the position he is in because his dad was supportive and very driven,” adds Cochrane-Davies. “He knew what Ben could achieve if he supported him in the right way. He played a lot of sport himself in New Zealand and knew a lot about professional sport. He pushed Ben on.”

However, Cochrane-Davies remembers a moment when Chilwell had doubts about continuing at Leicester and almost gave up on becoming a professional.

“I think he was around 13 or 14, and it was clear it was a lot of hard work, travelling, every other day after school to Leicester,” he recalls. “I think he had a few doubts then, because of the demands, but he stuck at it and worked hard. I am sure he is glad he did.”

The childhood mates were both Manchester United fans and attended their first United game together, a Champions League tie at Old Trafford against Benfica. At the time, David Beckham was so popular with the Woburn Lions players they all wanted to wear the No 7 shirt, so Swan devised a fair way to decide who got which number.

“I rolled the window down in my car and laid the shirts on the front seat and they had to reach in and just grab one,” he says. “Ben got the No 2 shirt and wore it all that season. I think his dad kept it when he left. I think he still has it.”

But while it was the muddy pitches at Woburn Playing Fields where Chilwell first played organised football, it was in the enclosed steel-cage courts that populate parks around Milton Keynes where he spent many more hours playing with his friends.

In the corner of Woburn Playing Fields, is one such cage, the goalposts below basketball hoops. Chilwell and his young team-mates would often be in there with a ball. There is another court outside his first school in Ridgmont.

Ben Chilwell cage football
 
The cage at Woburn Playing Fields, where Chilwell played for hours on end with his friends

“That was all we had available,” explains Cochrane-Davies. “While most people would go to a field, we would go to the cages and play football. We referred to it as ‘the park’ and he spent many hours playing football in them. Dele Alli as well, I would imagine.”

Now-Tottenham and England midfielder Dele and Chilwell, who became friends through playing for England at youth levels, weren’t the only ones who developed their skills on the small-sided pitches in Milton Keynes. Luton Town’s former England Under-21 defender Brendan Galloway, Wales’ George Williams and England Under-17 international Giorgio Rasulo — all former MK Dons youth players – would also join them in later years for five-a-side games in the summer at a Goals centre in the town.

Until recently, Chilwell could also be spotted playing with his friends on a local common near to Swan’s house.

“A couple of summers ago, he was up here having a kickabout with some of the boys,” Swan says as he points to a partially-hidden patch of grass. “You just think, ‘You shouldn’t have thighs that size!’. It’s ridiculous. But I suppose he is a top professional.

“He comes back and plays in the park. He is close to a group of lads he sees regularly. Local boys. It is tucked out of the way and there will only be a couple of dog-walkers over there, and they are not going to be expecting an England international to be playing in the park.”

Over the past couple of years, as Chilwell has established himself for club and country, he no longer joins in the impromptu kickabouts, but he has been seen occasionally driving around the area, firstly in the distinctive BMW i8 he was given by Leicester’s owners as a reward following the 2016 title win (despite only playing in the domestic cups that season) and, more recently, in a black Lamborghini.

“I used to see his i8 around on occasions but I think he has sold that now,” Swan adds. “The last time I saw him he was in a local restaurant with friends. It was the day after he made his England debut. He was very friendly and polite.

“He is still in contact with his old friends. His best mate, who he spends most weekends with, is the son of a friend of mine. He is out and about locally from time to time and is always incredibly polite and friendly.

“He is still exactly the same as that seven-year-old boy in that photo.”

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33 minutes ago, Special Juan said:

It should be Telles or Tagliafico

Telles is easily the most sensible buy. Low fee, currently on reasonable wages, right age profile and can deliver set pieces/crosses well from the left consistently. Not the greatest at defending but that is a trade off you have to accept with modern FB's as otherwise you get a Dave/AWB then everyone complains about their lack of ability in the final third. 

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Telles is easily the most sensible buy. Low fee, currently on reasonable wages, right age profile and can deliver set pieces/crosses well from the left consistently. Not the greatest at defending but that is a trade off you have to accept with modern FB's as otherwise you get a Dave/AWB then everyone complains about their lack of ability in the final third. 

----

You've just described Alonso.

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10 minutes ago, Dec said:

Telles is easily the most sensible buy. Low fee, currently on reasonable wages, right age profile and can deliver set pieces/crosses well from the left consistently. Not the greatest at defending but that is a trade off you have to accept with modern FB's as otherwise you get a Dave/AWB then everyone complains about their lack of ability in the final third. 

----

You've just described Alonso.

Agree, seems almost carbon copy of Alonso except Telles is a bit faster and better crosser.

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1 hour ago, Dec said:

Telles is easily the most sensible buy. Low fee, currently on reasonable wages, right age profile and can deliver set pieces/crosses well from the left consistently. Not the greatest at defending but that is a trade off you have to accept with modern FB's as otherwise you get a Dave/AWB then everyone complains about their lack of ability in the final third. 

----

You've just described Alonso.

Well if Alonso was a tad faster, then I think we wouldn't need a new FB as his lack of speed is a key issue to his brain farts as most of the time he does these as he is trying to scramble back. Telles is faster than him and a better crosser but is not as good at shooting as he is. 

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I noticed that Chilwell is not only pretty good in the final third, he transitions the ball very quick. Definitely an attribute Lampard wants in our players. 

Another reason why Lampard is so keen. 

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If we were to get a new Left Back, I'd rather the player tactically smart rather than quick. Being quick doesn't help Zouma become a great center back, despite his tactical flaws.

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It's not about being quick, its about moving the ball quick. The quicker we move the ball, the more chances we create. 

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3 hours ago, Azul said:

I pray that he doesn't come to Chelsea, he's overpriced and average defensively.

Now that Alaba is off the table I am 100% down for Theo Hernandez He is bigger (1.84m vs 1.79m) stronger, just as pacy, less expensive, 1 year younger (turns 23 in a several months) and better defensively than Chilwell.

The only other LB's who are remotely available who interest me are Telles and Gosens (although Gosens is more of an Alonso wingback type (1 and a half inches shorter than Alonso but far more pacy)

Ideally we would sell both Emerson and Alonso and buy Theo plus either Telles or Gosens, but that is probably a bit too much to ask

Pass on Nicolás Tagliafico, he is almost 28, is very small (1.72m)  and has never played in a Big 5 league at all, other than CL or EL He is a real dice roll in my book. Telles is the basically the same age (he is actually almost 4 months younger than Tags) and is a far better passer and has better size as well (around 10cms taller) PLUS Telles is a genius are corner and free kicks (top 5 corner kick taker in Europe from all that I have seen) He has 22 goals and 52 assists in the past 3 and 3/4ers seasons as a LB

Chillwell at £80m is madness, even £60m is a bad price, £40m and we can talk, and that is never going to happen with Leicester (they are not desperate, probably are in the CL, have billionaire owners, no huge debts, payroll, etc)

I would not be against taking Alaba on a free next year, but he (like Tags) will be 29yo then at season start or so

Alex Sandro (whom Juve ridiculously want 45m or so euros for) is 30yo in January, so his race is run and Juve can go fuck themselves

Jose Gaya is also really small and has a 100m euro release clause so hard pass

Junior Firpo has regressed at Barca, but they want 40m euros for him, lol, after buying him last year for only 18m euros, so FU to Barca as well

Rayan Aït Nouri only turned 19yo 3 weeks ago, so is so not ready to step right in

Alejandro Grimaldo is even shorter than Gaya and Tags, plus has not impressed me that much in the 5 or 6 games I have watched

Lucas Digne is a player I really rate, but Everton value him at £50-55m or so, so hard pass

Luca Pellegrini is being recalled by Juve and they said they will not sell

Layvin Kurzawa is off the table (renewed by PSG for 4 years)

Sergio Reguilón will either be bought perm by Sevilla or will go back and stay at Real Madrid

Alphonso Davies (obviously), Ferland Mendy, and Renan Lodi are basically never going to be sold now

Marcel Halstenberg is soon 29 (September) so too old to buy

Jamal Lewis is a typical overrated, overpriced English youngster from all that I have seen

Dalbert and Wendell are just not good enough

that is it, every FB I rate for a buy, and most are not doable or do not fit what we need or are too old or too small or too expensive or not for sale

Theo (clear front-runner skillset-wise plus age, size, etc)

Telles

Gosens (and we appear to have little interest in him)

are the final 3 for me

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