Final season was an odd one for Chelsea followers. The season began with a lot optimism. Frank Lampard had executed a strong job in his first season following his appointment from Derby in 2019, guiding the group to fourth within the league that season in addition to reaching the FA Cup last which they finally misplaced to Arsenal.
Over the summer time of 2020, they made 5 main acquisitions within the switch window – Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner, Ben Chilwell, Kai Havertz and Edouard Mendy – spending over £200 million in whole, probably the most of any membership in that switch window. It was maybe no shock that optimism was excessive.
Regardless of a powerful begin to the season, topping the desk in early December, issues began to show bitter for Lampard and a run of two wins in eight Premier League matches led to Lampard’s dismissal in late January 2021.
Sooner or later later, Thomas Tuchel was unveiled as the brand new supervisor and it was from this level that our season actually kicked in.
Below Tuchel, we improved on the again, turning into very troublesome to beat and regardless of sitting in ninth when he took over, Tuchel guided the group to fourth place within the Premier League, guaranteeing Champions League soccer as soon as once more, nevertheless, extra was to return.
Regardless of beginning as underdogs, the Blues triumphed within the season-ending showpiece – the Champions League Closing – beating Premier League Champions Manchester Metropolis one-nil to raise the trophy for the second time in our historical past.
All of that is only a backstory. Setting the scene for the season forward when certainly optimism round The Bridge has by no means been so excessive.
The favourites for the Premier League 2021-22
For the primary time shortly, Chelsea are the second-favourites to win the Premier League this season. Betway Sports activities has them at 6.00 to win the league this season, behind defending champions Manchester Metropolis who’re outright favourites with Betway at 1.75.
Following a poor defence of their title final season, Liverpool are additionally joint-favourites with Betway at 6.00 and Manchester United make up the highest 4 favourites at 10.00.
After all, so much will rely upon the motion within the switch window between now and the beginning of the season. With Euro 2020 solely simply reaching the knock-out phases, there are nonetheless numerous large names within the ‘store window’ through the the rest of the match and the entire prime groups within the PL will probably be wanting so as to add depth to their squad earlier than the window closes and the season kicks off on Friday 13 August.
Loads may also rely upon the beginning. Chelsea have been handed a tricky set of opening fixtures, going through Crystal Palace, Arsenal, Liverpool, Aston Villa, Liverpool and Manchester Metropolis of their first six video games of the season. Manchester United and Liverpool, on the flip facet, have been handed comparatively ‘straightforward’ opening fixtures on paper and that would open up an early hole on the prime if outcomes go the best way many would predict.
Switch discuss – the ‘large six’
If the Blues are to retain their place as second-favourites and actually push Manchester Metropolis all the best way subsequent season, you are feeling there are a variety of issues that have to occur (or not occur within the case of Metropolis).
For Chelsea, signing an out and out goalscorer should be a precedence. Regardless of some promising indicators from Timo Werner in direction of the tip of a disappointing first marketing campaign, you continue to really feel like we want some added firepower upfront – a 30 goals-a-season striker.
We’ve already been linked with a number of of Europe’s greatest through the early a part of the switch window together with a return for Romelu Lukaku and an audacious try to signal Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund.
Realistically, I’m not certain that both of these transfers goes to occur, actually not this 12 months. Lukaku appears effectively settled in Milan and off the again of a title-winning season, it’s laborious to see him leaving any time quickly.
Haaland is an fascinating one. There isn’t any doubt he has aspirations to play within the PL in the future and I’ve little question that Chelsea will probably be one of many few golf equipment that may afford to compete for his signature. I simply really feel like he has no less than yet another season at Dortmund in him earlier than he makes the transfer.
That leaves us with a dilemma. Can we wait and hope we are able to get him subsequent summer time or so we gamble on a ‘Plan B’ signing this summer time. Gerard Moreno has been touted as that ‘Plan B’ and his stats from final season make for very promising studying. 30 objectives and 11 assists throughout all competitions in a reasonably aggressive La Liga counsel he has the expertise to succeed. A Europa League winners medal additionally reveals he’s able to acting on the most important stage.
One other component to contemplate is the Chelsea issue in the case of signing world-class strikers. Our observe file is just not the most effective. Not since Drogba have we had a striker able to persistently delivering and we now have in truth seen a number of world-class strikers come and go with out ever delivering together with Fernando Torres, Andrei Shevchenko and Alvaro Morata while the jury remains to be out on Werner and compatriot Kai Havertz.
The Kane issue
One striker that’s by no means linked with Chelsea is Harry Kane. The Spurs striker appears extremely unlikely to maneuver wherever else in London given his allegiance to Spurs, nevertheless, worryingly all of the discuss this switch window is of Kane becoming a member of reigning champions Manchester Metropolis. Regardless of the lack of Sergio Aguero to Barcelona, you are feeling just like the signing of Kane would shorten Metropolis’s odds additional nonetheless and go away the remainder scrapping out for second place subsequent season so we’re all hoping Levy maintains his traditional sturdy stance in the case of letting star gamers go away and that Spurs can hold onto Kane for no less than yet another season.
Better of the remainder
It appears like the same old suspects will probably be scrapping it out with Chelsea and Metropolis for the title this season. Anticipate Liverpool to bounce again stronger and if they’ll preserve their centre backs match, it’s laborious to see them having one other poor season. We shouldn’t overlook that they ended up ending above Chelsea final season and it was a season that was thought of an enormous flop. In the event that they add to their squad and welcome again Van Dijk to their lineup, they may as soon as once more be a title contender.
You additionally should really feel like United may also strengthen and if they’ll type out their defence, they need to even be so much stronger. The inevitable signing of Jadon Sancho will add some depth and a striker like Cavani will probably be licking his chops on the considered the service Sancho has been delivering for Dortmund over the previous two seasons.
Leicester may also be within the combine once more and are greater than able to upsetting any of the standard ‘large six’ on their day. Leicester have spent extra time within the prime 4 than Chelsea within the final couple of 12 months however have twice fallen in need of Champions League qualification. Don’t rule them out for one more sturdy season this 12 months.
Past that, it’s laborious to see West Ham sustaining their kind from final season and each Spurs and Arsenal have numerous work to do in the event that they need to put themselves again within the top-four combine once more.
The switch window may nonetheless have a giant say in who finally ends up profitable the Premier League title in 2021-22, nevertheless, I believe Blues followers can justify their optimism heading into the brand new season. Solely time will inform if Tuchel can keep on his wonderful begin and produce house the title for the primary time since 2017.
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