With Chelsea’s recent dipping form and the need to catch up with league leaders Manchester City, some of the attention has turned to the Winter transfer window, which opens late next month. With the ongoing critisicms over the Blues’ defence, midfield and attack, let us take a peek into some areas which Villas-Boas might shore up.
A huge liability which has cost Chelsea many goals this season. John Terry’s slip before Robin van Persie’s goal during their 5-3 defeat against Arsenal and David Luiz’s gung-ho approach during the Liverpool game has shown that the Blues’ defence, though pretty star-studded, still has many weaknesses.
With Ashley Cole and Branislav Ivanonic being the only defenders who have performed consistently, there is indeed a growing need to plug the leak at the heart of the defence. Chelsea could really do better with the signing of more consistent players, such as perhaps French star Phillippe Mexes or AC Milan’s Thiago Silva. Both are truly consistent performers, both at the club and international level. Although most reports reckon that Bolton’s Gary Cahill is a certain arrival, either in January or for free next summer.
Chelsea’s midfield, I must admit, is truly one of the strongest in the Premier League. Boasting international stars like Wingers Juan Manuel Mata and Florent Malouda, alongside gifted Brazilian Ramires and talisman Frank Lampard, Chelsea’s midfield is truly all-rounded. The signing of Raul Meireles from Liverpool in August has also brought about creativity in the centre of the park. However, with the presense of the inconsistent Jon Obi Mikel and the ageing vice-captain Lampard, perhaps a signing or 2 will help in ensuring the continuity of quality?
Recent rumours has it that Chelsea have been linked with Lille’s talented midfielder Eden Hazard, who is also a target for Arsenal and Liverpool. The 20-year-old, who has produced consistent displays for both club and country (Belgium), is indeed a hot prospect although his price tag of 50 million euros have invited some critics calling him overrated. But still, if Roman Abramovich is willing to cough out the money, they will probably make a worthy investment that could last for a decade, given his young age.
Needless to say, most of the recent hoo-ha have basically revolved around Fernando Torres. Brought at a hefty price of £50 million, he has definitely not met expectations and is still struggling to find the form that made him such a hit at Liverpool. Given Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka’s age, coupled with Torres’ poor form, the need for a prolific striker is definitely something Andre Villas-Boas has to look at during the January transfer window.
Thank goodness, youngster Daniel Sturridge has risen to the occasion and has made a couple of solid performances which have given the fans a glimpse of what he could be in the future. So has Romelu Lukaku, although he has yet to play a full game for the Blues. Perhaps having a classy Brazilian strike-partner like Robinho or Honorato Nilmar could be good for his development?
Are we anticipating an exciting winter transfer window here?