Looking solely at the business side of things especially when it comes to football, Chelsea’s effort in selling more than a dozen of first-team players in a single transfer window and replacing them with young counterparts with potential that can very well surpass most if not all of them is commendable. But while the business side of Chelsea is very important, all talk on the big things the new ownership plans to build on top of our squad won’t matter if the “good business” on paper doesn’t translate into good results on the pitch.
This revamped Chelsea squad have little to no cohesion, and that’s expected of a team built over a span of one-year-and-a-half. Same goes for the inconsistency they display over the course of 90 minutes, where good starts are followed by chaos as recognised by manager Mauricio Pochettino after a goalless draw against AFC Bournemouth at Dean Court today.
“I think again we need to complete the chances that we create. In the first 20 or 25 minutes we deserved to score but we did not score. At the end the game was open, in the last 15 or 20 minutes I think we wanted to win, sometimes we started to disorganise our line because the full-back was so high, which gave Bournemouth the possibility to make some counter-attacks against us in some transitions.”
The 0-0 result is very deceiving given how both sides were very close to scoring at some points of the match. The issue for Chelsea is that Bournemouth have yet to win a single Premier League game since May last year when they fell 3-1 to us at their home turf, and we nearly gave them a “lift me up”.
Chelsea themselves have only won a single game in the Premier League thus far, a 3-0 dismantling of Luton who already look destined to early relegation. While the players should be ‘more relaxed’, it’s difficult to stay that way when you just don’t have the experience to grab a goal and see the game out at the professional level.
“We need to be more relaxed. Sometimes the defensive players want to help because the feeling is we are creating chances but do not score. Then we need to be clever but many of the players are still learning about the game. That happens when you are building a new team with many areas we need to improve.
“In these type of games when you are pushing and pushing trying to score and you cannot score, it is normal. But if you cannot win, you cannot lose the game. We are disappointed with the result because we wanted to win but of course we know the circumstances in the game. We deserved more but we didn’t get what we deserved.”
Once again Chelsea were suddenly depleted due to health issues, with Moisés Caicedo, Marc Cucurella and Noni Madueke all dropped due to illness or physical problems picked up during the international window. Their absences could work as a way to garner more sympathy from Chelsea fans, but in the end it does the exact opposite.
After all, this is still the team that invested over £1b in new players not just for the starting eleven, but also to rotate the squad. 12 missing players is an impressive number, but it will still raise questions on the squad building taking place and what leads to such a busy medical department.
“There are expectations. I think the fans know if you invest the money that people talk about in the media there is expectation. If you do not win it is normal that the fans are not happy. What I can tell the fans are the circumstances, which we cannot change. The reality we cannot change. There are too many players not available.”
But in the face of all adversity and issues that won’t be solved until time goes by, Pochettino will stay resolute. Beyond choosing our tactical plans and the starting lineup, the job also requires him to stay optimistic and especially ‘patient’ with regards to Chelsea’s performances and results.
“Am I going to cry or complain? No. I need to accept this challenge and keep being positive. Every team is going to compete and it’s going to be difficult, but fair or not fair those are the circumstances. We need to accept it and we need to be positive and patient. We are not going to change the way that we are going to do things.
“Then we have our opinion, our reality and how we assess the team. Given all the circumstances I think we are doing very good things, more than people can expect. But Chelsea’s expectation is always to win. We are creating something that we need to believe in. There are young guys who need to feel what it means to be a Chelsea player and what it means to play in the Premier League.”
-Mauricio Pochettino; Source: Chelsea FC
Unfortunately for Pochettino and Chelsea, the more we pick up these results the more the old adage of “you can’t win anything with kids” will stab our minds. Will there be enough time for him and his young players to prove otherwise?
We certainly hope so.