A couple of weeks ago it became very obvious that Andre Schurrle is going to sign for Chelsea after the club confirmed a deal had been reached with Schurrle’s club, Bayer Leverkusen (and since writing this deal has gone through). The papers refuse to stop linking us with Napoli forward Edinson Cavani and whilst his arrival is far less certain it is clear there will be some business. Jose Mourinho admitted as much in his press conference suggesting we would be looking at “two or three new players”. I like new signings as much as the next person but as far as I’m concerned we really don’t need too many new players, if at all.
In terms of the men between the sticks I think it is fairly obvious how the future of Chelsea is going to go with Cech in place for another season at least. It has been confirmed that Thibaut Courtois is going to spend another season on loan with Atletico and having watched him regularly this season I’d say that will be his last. After that Cech will be 32 which is by no means the end for a goalkeeper but he may get demoted to number two or he may even look for a new club. In defence we seem to have our right side sorted with two very talented young right backs. Given we already have Azpilicueta I’m not sure of the logic behind signing Fluminese’s Wallace but reports suggest he will turn out to be a very good buy, and I’m sure one will make that position their own. Centre-back is another position that we seem fairly well catered for with four top quality player in that position. Terry may not be what he once was and Luiz may now be bettered suited to playing in defensive midfield but they are still good centre-backs. Nathaniel Chalobah has been converted into a midfielder under Watford boss Gianfranco Zola but we still have Nathan Aké who can play as both a centre-back and a defensive midfield. We shouldn’t forget that we also have Kenneth Omeruo returning from his loan spell with ADO Den Haag. At left-back we have arguably the finest player in the world in Ashley Cole but I’m not convinced in the potential of Ryan Bertrand. One player I would like to see us sign is Southampton’s Luke Shaw. A self-professed Blues fan I really do believe he could be the future at left-back for both us and England.
In the midfield we have an incredible strength in depth and Schurrle’s signing only adds to that. Yossi Benayoun and Florent Malouda have already left following the expiration of their contracts but we still have more than enough midfielders. In terms of players who can sit deeper we have the likes of Lampard, Mikel, Essien, Luiz, Ramires, Romeu, McEachran and even Kevin De Bruyne. We also have more than a few who can play further forward including Oscar, Mata, Hazard, Moses, Schurrle, Kakuta, Marin and De Bruyne. Clearly the need to sign more midfielders is not a high priority one and although Lampard is getting on I’m sure he can give us at least one more season at the top of his game. Signing Schurrle gives us another option going forward and if you look at how Mourinho lined up at Real Madrid he’ll probably employ a similar 4-2-3-1 with us. Whether he plays Oscar as the player on the right of the three or whether he rotates him with Mata could be key. I like Oscar a lot and although he clearly excels through the middle I think he is more than capable operating on the right and then cutting inside. I see little reason why our first choice attacking three should change from last season but the options we have mean we should be able to cope with even the worst injury crisis.
Up front is probably the one area I would concede that we could afford to strengthen. Whatever way you look at it Fernando Torres and Demba Ba are nowhere near good enough for a team of our calibre, especially when you consider the former’s wages are rumoured to be around £175,000 per week. Edinson Cavani would be an attractive option but another striker for £50 million? I’m not so sure. His pedigree and recent track record is arguably more attractive than Torres’ was at the time we signed him for Liverpool but with Financial Fair Play looming I’m not sure we can afford to make any more expensive mistakes in the transfer market. For me Romelu Lukaku has more than earned his shot with the Chelsea first team. Last season when he was on loan with West Bromwich Albion Lukaku bagged 17 league goals and that was playing in front of West Brom’s midfield. With the greatest amount of respect to West Brom the likes of James Morison, Graham Dorrans and Chris Brunt cannot compete with Hazard, Mata and Oscar in terms of creativity. With those three wreaking havoc behind him Lukaku will probably score more given the number of chances our midfield will create.
Whether the fans like it or not Chelsea are a club that will always make signings every single window but for me I think this might be one window we can remain quiet. In Mourinho we have one of the best man-managers and motivators in the game. Under his guidance those who underperformed might become key players. He transformed the career of Frank Lampard and who’s to say he can’t do the same with someone like De Bruyne. Spending large amounts of money seems a bit much given the wealth in our squad but unlikes previous managers or even Michael Emenalo I trust Mourinho in the transfer market.
No need to go overboard and definitely no need to panic buy.