Shark ENG (1)
Jul 092013
 

When we speak of the up and coming youth players at Chelsea who will become first team players, Ryan Bertrand is always at the top of the list. When speaking of his attributes, the word youth is never far away, and yet you might be surprised to know he will be 24 by the time next season starts. To put that in context; Oscar is 21, Mata 25, Hazard 22, Azpilicueta will be 24 while new signings Schurrle and van Ginkel will be 20 and 22 respectively. Bertrand is past the point of being a young, promising talent – this is when he should be cementing his place in the team. So far, he has been unable to do so.

Why is this? Bertrand has had several loan spells, and he has returned from every single one with a glowing report card and tremendous additional experience. He has featured over 160 times for other clubs while employed by Chelsea, and yet only managed 53 appearances for us in the last three seasons. 38 of these were last seasons, but many were as a substitute. Furthermore, Bertrand has never been trusted to nail down one position in this Chelsea team. Recently he has been deployed as an attacking left winger – it’s a position he can do a job in but ask any of Norwich, Reading or Nottingham Forest where he should be playing and all three will confirm he was incredible for them at left back.

The problem, then, is Ashley Cole. Cole is 32, but he recently signed a further 1 year deal at the club, and he has shown little sign of slowing down as he enters his 30’s. However, if you take Cole out of the picture, does anyone think that Bertrand would be entrusted as first choice over the course of a season? I certainly don’t. Whether Ryan could eventually become a first choice left back for us is irrelevant – he simply hasn’t been given the chance. When we need to replace Cole, we will buy a replacement. At 24, Bertrand has simply gone too far, and he hasn’t been given his chance. He could well stay at Chelsea as a utility player – every club needs those – but Ryan is better than that. Given the chance, he could become a first choice left back at a Premier League club. Just because I don’t think that will happen at Chelsea doesn’t mean it can’t happen elsewhere.

Tell us, what would you do with Ryan Bertrand?

Jan 232013
 

Chelsea left-back Ashley Cole has agreed a one-year extension to his current contract, keeping him with the West-London club until at the summer of 2014, and I personally believe it is because ‘The Special One’ is returning home.

Cole had been expected to leave the Blues at the end of the season for free, with Chelsea previously said to be unwilling to offer the 32 year-old a new deal.

The England left-back’s agent was in Madrid earlier this month to hold talks over a possible move to Real, but with Jose Mourinho leaving Spain this summer he decided to look elsewhere.

‘The Special One’ is said to have been in contact with senior Chelsea stars Ashley Cole, John Terry and Frank Lampard since his time at Stamford Bridge, and I believe he is the reason Roman Abramovich and the Ex-Arsenal defender have been able to agree terms.

Jose is widely expected to return to Stamford Bridge for next season, having been in constant contact with Roman this season. He is said to be consulted on football matters on regular occasions having reconciled their relationship in the past year.

Mourinho is and always be a favourite at Stamford Bridge, having brought instant Premier League success with back-to-back PL titles in his first two seasons. He has always spoken highly of Chelsea and the Premier League and is as short as 5-4 favourite with one bookmaker to become the Blues boss this summer.

Chelsea fans have wanted Jose to return since the day he left, and we finally look to be getting our wish. The Portugese manager has proved his tactical abilities in Spain and Italy, and has declared himself that he wishes to return to England soon. Is Jose really coming home to Chelsea? I believe so…

Jan 222013
 

Chelsea Football Club have today confirmed that left-back Ashley Cole has signed a one-year extension to his current deal, which was set to expire at the end of the season.

Cole had firmly expected to leave at the end of the season, along with Blues legend Frank Lampard, following rumours that the Chelsea hierarchy were unwilling to offer the 32 year-old a new deal.

The 99-cap England defender’s agent was in Madrid for talks over a possible move to Jose Mourinho’s current club, Real Madrid, at the end of the season. He has also been linked with reunions with Ex-Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti at Paris Saint-Germain but has decided he would rather stay exactly where he is for now.

Cole said: ‘I am pleased I will be starting my eighth season at Chelsea. I have great memories here and I enjoy coming to training every day. The staff are amazing and I enjoy training with the lads.

‘I have been able to fulfil nearly all my ambitions at Chelsea. I have won the Champions League, the League, I have won FA Cups here but of course you don’t want to stop winning trophies and being at a big club, you are always fighting to win a trophy.

‘Being here for seven years and being at Arsenal before that playing for trophies, you never lose that hunger. I wanted to stay at Chelsea because we are always fighting and challenging for trophies. That desire and the will to want to win things have not gone.’

We will all be happy to see the best left-back around staying at Stamford Bridge for another season, and are now hoping Frank Lampard will be next. There was no possible player who could replace Cole’s ability or influence on the team so for me it was a no-brainer. Well done Roman, now all we want is you to hurry up and extend Lampard’s contract, and confirm Rafa Benitez will not be staying on beyond the summer.

Jan 132013
 

Chelsea’s Ashley Cole is targeting a move to Manchester United, according to reports in the Sunday People.

Cole’s agent is in Madrid this weekend, holding talks with the Real hierarchy over a possible Spanish move in the summer, but recent findings suggest he would be more willing to remain in the Premier League.

Manchester United are keeping taps on the left-back’s movement, with Sir Alex Ferguson keen on keeping ahead of the opposition.

United, along with other Premier League sides, are not allowed to make contact with Cole until the end of the season. He is however allowed contact with foreign clubs, with a view to signing a pre-agreement for the summer.

Manchester City are also likely to offer the England left-back a deal in the summer, having become frustrated with Gael Clichy and Aleksandar Kolarov’s failure to impress consistently in that position.

Man United tried to sign Everton’s Leighton Baines over the summer, but were reluctant to offer the £15million demanded by the Merseyside club.

Chelsea have been linked with the Everton man also, with a view to replacing Cole with his England counter-part. Baines has been ever-consistent since his arrival in the Premier League with Wigan, before being bought by current club Everton in 2007.

I would not like to watch Cole week in week out performing for one of our Premier League rivals, but if he does not sign a pre-agreement with the likes of PSG, Real or Barcelona in the next couple of months, that will appear to be his future. Roman Abramovich will have to look into extending his contract is that looked to be the case. He is the best left-back around, and the last thing we should be doing is strengthening our rivals. Fix up Roman!

Jan 122013
 

Ashley Cole’s agent has arrived in Madrid for talks with the Galácticos, ahead of a possible move for the player in the summer.

The 32 year-old’s contract is set to expire in the summer, with Chelsea rumoured to be unwilling to extend his contract.

Early reports suggested that the Blues were only willing to offer a one-year extension, with Cole wanting a two-year extension. The latest news appears to show Chelsea unwilling to offer any kind of deal to the left-back, still recognised by many as the best left-back in the world.

Carlo Ancelotti is said to be very keen on a reunion with the player he once coached at Chelsea. The Paris saint-Germain boss is rumoured to be out of favour at his club, and is on the shortlist to become Real Madrid boss in the coming summer. Whichever club he coaches, he will try to bring Cole with him.

Ashley Cole’s mother claimed that her son had set his sights on a move to France, but recent reports suggested the 99-cap England left-back has planned to live in Spain.

Real defender Fabio Coentrao has been linked with a move in the opposite direction, having failed to challenge Marcelo for a regular place in the Real starting line-up. Coentrao had the chance to sign for the West-Londoners from Benfica 18 months ago before deciding on Madrid.

I hope Roman Abramovich changes his mind in the near future, but have given up on that idea. He is still the best left-back in the world at the age of 32 and shows no signs of age. Cole, along with Frank Lampard, will play on for another 2 seasons at least, and playing Champions League football at that. Don’t worry lads, we know its not your fault…

Jan 092013
 

Chelsea interim manager Rafa Benitez gave the biggest hint yet that Frank Lampard and the other “legends” may be on their way out in the near future.

Lampard and Ashley Cole’s contracts are due to expire at the end of the season, and have yet to be offered new contracts. It had been reported that Ashley would be offered a one-year extension to his deal, with Frank’s agent claiming that the Blues will not be offering the 34 year-old a new deal. No official stance has yet been given.

John Terry’s contract runs out at the end of next season, and is expected to be another Chelsea casualty when his current deal expires.

Rafa Benitez is only in temporary charge of the team currently, and it is unsure how much influence he has on the players in the long term.

Rafa said: “It’s easy to talk about the legends, and you have to have a lot of respect for them. What they’ve achieved for this club has been fantastic. But you have to have new players, English or foreign, it doesn’t matter, and carry on winning games.

“That’s what the fans are expecting. Everyone knows the legends have been here and what they have achieved, but you have to see new players coming. It’s part of life.

“I cannot talk about the past, but I can see the club is changing things for the future, thinking about being successful again. It’s not just: ‘Oh, we won,’ and that’s it.

“You have to keep winning as much as you can, you can’t think, ‘That’s it, we’ve won now’. You have to keep evolving. That means you have to keep bringing in good new players.

“If you want to keep winning, to have the winning mentality, you need the new generation pushing you. Chelsea are managing this situation because they were successful.

“Every year you have to bring in someone else. The English question is something you have to consider, but this year you have three or four players, you have Hazard, Oscar, Piazon and Marin who came last summer, and they will need some time. That is part of the evolution of the team.”

Chelsea will no doubt challenge for years to come, and I can understand why they would be willing to let Frank go considering his wages, I just wish he could stay. He has done a lot for the club, and has helped deliver many trophies to us. The legends will never be forgotten, and I wish them all the best for the future. Do you have a favourite Franky moment?

Jan 042013
 

Real Madrid have offered Fabio Coentrao to Chelsea on a permanent basis, according to reports around Stamford Bridge.

Coentrao has failed to make an impact at Real since his move from Benfica 18 months ago, with Marcelo dominating the left-back position.

The 24 year-old had been rumoured to be considering his options, and his arrival late to training on New Years Day is thought to have been the nail is his Real coffin.

Chelsea had tried to sign the attacking full-back before he chose Madrid as his preferred destination, and are expected to bid for the talented star.

Chelsea are expected to haggle with Real over the price, with the Castilla club likely to want to recover as much of his £27million fee, and a £14million bid is expected from Chelsea to open proceedings.

Manchester City are also expected to bid for the player, with Mancini reportedly unhappy with Gael Clichy’s inconsistencies this season. If they do bid the fee will probably rise to around £20million.

Chelsea are firmly expected to lose Ashley Cole at the season, with his current deal set to expire. That loss will leave the Blues with Ryan Bertrand, who recently signed a new five-year deal, as their only recognised senior left-back.

I believe Coentrao to be a quality player, and believe at 24, he and Bertrand could fight it out for years to come. The Portuguese star would make an immediate impact, but Ryan has been progressing steadily and I believe he will fight for his place for seasons to come.

Jan 012013
 

Chelsea are looking into the possibility of signing Fabio Coentrao from Real Madrid, as the player is considering his options.

Coentrao has been playing second-fiddle to Marcelo for much of the season, having started only 6 Primera Liga games so far this term.

The 24 year-old snubbed the Blues to sign for Madrid 18 months ago and Chelsea see the left-back as the perfect long-term replacement for Ashley Cole, who is thought to be leaving Chelsea at the end of his contract this summer.

Real Madrid are apparently vying to sign Gareth Bale for a huge £60million and that signing would further limit the Portuguese international’s opportunities at Real, as well as the possible signing of Chelsea’s Cole at the end of the season.

Coentrao was the man of the match in Real Madrid’s Champions League group game against Manchester City, but Real did not reward his efforts a run in the first-team, leaving the £24M defender bemused at his lack of game time.

Fabio is said to be considering his future at the club, with his international first-team place under threat with his lack of first-team opportunities, and Silvio looking to firm up his place in the Portugal side.

I believe Coentrao would be a good signing for us, he is an established international and at only 24, could establish himself as Chelsea’s first-choice left-back for years to come. I feel sorry for Bertrand who doesn’t appear to be trusted to take over from Ashley Cole, but the Portuguese man is somebody I foresee fitting in very well within our squad. If we do let Ashley go, then Fabio would be a worthy replacement.

Jan 012013
 

Paris Saint-Germain boss Leonardo has denied reports suggesting they have tried to make contact with Chelsea about Ashley Cole leaving the club.

Ashley’s contract is set to expire at the end of the season, and is allowed to talk to foreign clubs from today.

PSG have been heavily linked with a move for Cole, with the bookmakers making them strong favourites.

Leonardo said: “We have never spoken with Ashley Cole, there has never been any contact.

“Carlo was his coach at Chelsea, that’s why that story is doing the rounds.”

The PSG boss then went on to deny rumours of signing Wesley Sneijder in January, saying: “Sincerely, we have never contacted Wesley Sneijder to come to PSG, we have five players in his position already.”

Real Madrid and Monaco are other foreign clubs linked with moves for the England left-back, with both Manchester clubs said to be keen on the veteran full-back’s signature.

English clubs will however be denied the chance to talk to the 99-cap England star until the end of the season, unless they agree a fee with Chelsea to sign the player in January.

Chelsea look more than willing to let the ‘best left-back in the world’ leave, and are currently seeking his replacement. Leighton Baines and Assou-Ekotto look the most likely replacements, with Baines set to take Cole’s place in the England team.

I would much rather see Ash sign an extension, but Roman has his own ideas. Chelsea consistently win trophies, I hope he hasn’t gone too far wrong with this new over-30s policy.

Dec 312012
 

Frank Lampard put in a man of the match performance yesterday in Chelsea’s 2-1 win over Everton at Goodison Park yesterday, but admits he still has no offer on the table.

The England central midfielder’s current deal is set to expire at the end of the season, and the 34 year-old is allowed to talk to foreign clubs about a free-transfer in the summer as of tomorrow.

Frank Lampard scored both of Chelsea’s goals in yesterday’s win, and has been in fine form since his return from injury.

Chelsea fans have taken some time out of abusing Rafa Benitez from the sidelines to cheer ‘sign him up’, in reference to extending Franky’s current deal.

Chelsea have only failed to win in 1 match that Frank Lampard has started in this seasons Premier League, yet Roman Abramovich seems unimpressed. The Russian tycoon is refusing to offer any new contracts to John Terry, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole. These 3 players have all been key to Chelsea for many years, and are still at the top of their games today.

Cole will also be allowed to talk to foreign clubs as of tomorrow, with a host of clubs across Europe hoping for his signature. He was reportedly offered a one-year extension, but refused that in hope of a two-year deal.

John Terry’s deal is set to expire at the end of next season, and it is thought that he will not be offered an extension either.

It is upsetting to think Chelsea will be letting our best players leave at the end of the season, and for free! Roman Abramovich should realise the experienced players influence on the whole squad, especially the young stars who are trying to grow into the players they wish to become. Sign them up Roman.