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Posts posted by jones

  1. I think we are taking the ban this summer, to go for Lampard+youth. Build a new foundation on our only competitive advantage (world’s best academy). Cech in as DoF fits that bill perfectly. Big strategic change if so, Lampard certainly will be given time and will not have the same tough expectations as previous managers. 

    Makes sense to me, think it is our best option going forward. If we succeed with it, it is a brilliant move. If we fail, we can always revert to hire-fire strategy. Not too much risk considering the transfer ban is already there and a big challenge regardless of when it comes in to play. Might as well use it as an opportunity to give chances to the top talent that are breaking through at the moment.

  2. 7 hours ago, xCELERYx said:

    Word circulating at the moment in Italy is that AC Milan will not be taking up their option to sign Bakayoko outright. 

    Can’t see him returning to play for Sarri. Looked completely off in pre-season and Sarri was quick to dismiss him. Another loan if nobody else is ready to pay 30m plus for him?

  3. If it is true the board is considering not appealing to CAS, I can understand why and am possibly even pro doing so.


    This squad is going to need an overhaul, and the answer is buying a few and using the loan army/academy to a lagre extent. Both because it is the only viable financial solution and because the talent in the loan army is high, atguably higher than ever. With one summer transfer window 99.9% certain to be banned, which one do we «choose»?

    There are several reasons to why this summer transfer window is already broken.

    1) Real, Barcelona, Bayern, United will all be very aggressive in the market,  clubs we on most occasions can’t compete with, and it looks to be an even more competitive window than usual 

    2) There are no obvious solutions to our main issue at CF (again, given point above how Real is snatching Jovic)

    3) The ban has already set us back, because the uncertainty on can we sign/can we not sign has for sure impeded us in both planning and warming up players/agents (we all know most big deals take weeks/months to conclude)

    So, will we be able to sign the players we really need this summer? If not, surely taking the ban now and being able to spend next summer is at least an option to consider. 

    We also have the opportunity of signing Kovacic (according to reports) and Pulisic is already coming, plus several loan players can actually come in and strengthen us in some positions. It is hence not the worst window to take a ban.

    It is a risky move though, because we do not yet know how much the loss of Eden will affect us, and the injuries of RLC and CHO means they will not return until 2020. But right now, with our hands tied, and in need of a rejuvenation and rebuild, I would start the prosess now by integrating the young exciting prospects and then useå next summer to add world class talent from the transfer market.

    That would also mean keeping Sarri to get consistency, and then spend money next summer to back the likely new manager then.

    Kepa, Willy, Cumming

    Azpi, James

    Luiz, Christensen, Rudiger, Zouma/Tomori

    Emerson, Alonso

    Jorginho, Kovacic, Kanté, Ampadu, RLC, Barkley, Mount

    Pulisic, Willian, Pedro, CHO

    Tammy, Giroud, Batshuayi

    If we get some consistency improvement from keeping the manager and most of the squad + Pulisic, Mount, Tammy, Batshuayi can be decent in front of goal, it is not impossible to get CL qualification next year. But regardless I think we should all be prepared for a season of varying performances albeit with some very Interesting Chelsea boys to pay attention to.

  4. 6 hours ago, xCELERYx said:

    That point hasn't been lost. I've addressed this in a number of prior posts, even during the season when discussing the clubs future direction moving forward. Transfer ban or not, I'd not have extended Luiz's deal either way. I simply don't believe he deserves a new contract. In my opinion, along with the position the club currently finds itself, I'd prefer us to have a real focus on using the circumstances to put significantly more faith in a younger core of players. I'd rather sit through a season of inconsistency knowing that we're providing the young talent we have with invaluable senior football to aid their development. In doing so it may just help fast track a couple of players, maybe we'll unearth a stud in the process. Worst case is we can put a line through those who simply don't turn out to be good enough and move them on for solid financial compensation. 

    This squad needs an overhaul. The prospect of seeing unreliable players like Luiz still being focal points of the side does little to encourage - short or long term.


    While I am totally with you on building a new core with many of the young players, we disagree on Luiz. Having some form of consistency in experience and leadership in the transition we hopefully will go thorugh over the next 2-3 years is absolutely key from a risk point of view. I am not too fussed about us ending 6th next season if the likes of James, Mount, Tammy + a couple of other academy players have been vital squad players and seen massive development. But what if we sell too many of the experienced players and end up 12th while the hype on said players have quickly fallen? Where do we go from there, and what is left? 

    While Pedro, Willian, Luiz et al is often ridiculed, they are PL and CL winners with 50+ caps for the best national teams in the world, and despite their flaws have gone through highs and lows, and will bring calmness and confidence when things go bad. You have no guarantee these massively talented young players will not buckle under the pressure of carrying the responsibility of Chelsea Football Club in our first season without Eden Hazard. 

    Start the transition now, but do not risk the club’s future by putting too much pressure on young players.

    Luiz is not the perfect player, but he is the perfect person to have around as we rebuild step by step. And seeing how Christensen reacts to errors (still not recovered from Barcelona) vs how Luiz reacts, for me it is dead clear who I want to put my trust in.

  5. 15 hours ago, xCELERYx said:

    I can understand the reasoning given our situation, however on the flip side there's the fact he's 32 and not the future of the club no matter how you look at it. With the club in the precarious situation it is currently, I'd prefer us to have a longer view in the room and aim to develop a partnership that can be more long term. It's easier to sit through and justify say Christensen making the mistakes Luiz does than a 32 year old seasoned professional who is the first to pass the buck. 

    Luiz has a career trajectory that's only going to go south, and if we're going to persist with him for the next 12-24 months as a first choice option that's a huge worry.

    Just like Luiz is being underrated by most of our fans, Christensen is being overrated. One of the few things Sarri has been spot on about is using Rudiger + Luiz, and having Christensen as CB3. That does not mean either of them are world class, but Luiz’ standing in the team and in the sport is a big asset people tend to ignore. He is being idolised by many, and is one of few leaders in the squad. Maybe not your typical captain, but someone who takes care of and motivates many of the young players. Not enough to warrant a new contract alone, but surely part of the reason why extending his stay makes sense.

    Oh, and for me, Christensen needs to earn his starting spot on merit, just like CHO and RLC did this season. To do that, he needs to take another step. 

  6. If Sarri stays then Luiz should stay, agree with that. And Zouma I agree should prolong his Everton loan, since I expect we will be under transfer ban next summer instead of this one.

    But if Sarri leaves, which I think is a possibility, we surely will be going for a tactically different manager and hopefully someone who will be given more patience to build a new identity and team for the next 5 years. That will most likely be without Luiz, and I think most managers would be interested in bringing Zouma back. Newton and the club clearly also rates him as the standout player in the loan group, so he could be brought back almost regardless. 

    There is also a concern Rudiger can be out longer than July/August, which also can count in his favour.

    One year ago I advocated the sale of Zouma, but he has really fought his way back, and now I would argue his Chelsea future looks rather bright.

    He has a lovely personality and will be a great guy to have in a new Chelsea, first choice or not.

  7. 7 hours ago, Ham said:

    Reece James has said goodbye to Wigan.  I'd like to see him in our pre-season. 

    I think it is given Zappacosta will be sold, and James will be brought back to compete with Azpi at RB. I fully expect him to take over from Azpi in a couple of seasons, and with them being 19 and 29 respectively I think it is a great time to start the transition.

    LB is bigger issue though, and I would not hold it against Reece James if Azpi was moved there and James took the starting role at RB already next season. That is how much l rate him.

  8. 3 hours ago, xCELERYx said:

    I think his days are numbers while we focus on playing out from the back. He averages nearly half the number of passes our CB's currently do, while completing them at a far less rate. Quite a few liked to get on Cahill's back about his ability on the ball, yet his passing competition rate is around 10% greater than Zouma's. I don't see Zouma being able to double his passing volume while also taking his passing completion percentage up to the high 80's low 90's from where it currently sits. If he somehow did manage to do this, he lacks the overall technical ability on the ball that's required when playing out under pressure. 

    Also think that after playing so regularly for Everton it would be virtually impossible for him to return and be content with a marginal role on the bench in a similar capacity that Christensen and Cahill found themselves in. For that reason, I reckon he'll either be loaned out again to maximise his return value or sold if we get an offer that's too good to turn down. 

    Which further highlights the need to go in another tactical direction. Zouma is arguably our best defender (after Azpi) and is more than good enough on the ball for most tactics/styles. Playing Sarriball out from the back I agree he does not have the tight ball control for - at least from what I have seen, I would not be very comfortable.

    Zouma and Rudiger would be a physically insane pairing, and allowing us to play with a high defensive line. I would love to see the two play together. But I also think Luiz is world class on his day, it is too soon to cut Christensen even if I am worried about his lack of confidence and ruthlessness, and Tomori is more than just an interesting prospect.

    We are lucky to have so many good options, but it is also a problem for us that there are no clear first choices. Whoever is our manager next season really needs to form a good pairing, as any new Chelsea will start with a solid defence and a solid CB duo. Zouma definitely is cabable being one of the two, if the manager is right.

  9. 18 hours ago, Droy was my hero said:

    Kante has never been a DM, and very very obviously would be a bad fit there.  Jorginho against Brighton was terrific, and is clearly there to stay whatever some people think.
    So the midfield role to spare is the RLC/Kovacic/Barkley one, where none have consistently impressed.

    The very idea of Barkley or RLC playing "box to box" instead of Kante is bizarre.  Much like the idea of tying Kante down to within 15 yards of his CBs and then asking him to spray the ball about.

    Haha, he plays DM for France. And won the world cup playing there. So yeah, obviously a bad fit.

    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx; deleted.

  10. 17 hours ago, Leo91 said:

    Last nights goal

    23 goals in 42 games from midfield this season. God I hope this ban is upheld and we can get him in. He's ready made for the big time. It would be a travesty if one of our rivals get his signature.

    Yeah, he looks very promising. We need a goalscorer for that advanced role in a non-Sarri midfield three. Coutinho and Fekir are great options also - if we signed one of them I will be very happy. Mount can be back up option, and RLC (Barkley) to play box to box on the other side with Kanté (Ampadu) as DM. 

  11. Genuinely think too many fans have been intoxicated by our own fear of playing younger players. It really is not all that complicated. CHO is more than good enough to play more often than he is playing. Both because of his own abilities, but also because of Willian and Pedro's performances. Players do not have to be perfect in all aspects of the game to play for this club.

    Sarri's poor judgement may cost us the best academy player since John Terry. Not all his fault, this fault is of course just as much on club/board level, but it is one of the reasons I lost faith in Sarri a long time ago. 

    Integrating academy players and creating a Chelsea identity and culture for the years to come will be more important than titles or playing attractive football short term. We need a manager that fits that job description.

    That man is Frank.

    • Confused 1

  12. 8 hours ago, Droy was my hero said:

    And Drogba only turned professional at 21.

    There must be thousands of 20 year old amateur CFs that we could give contracts to in the hope that they might be as good as Drogba.  And dozens of Championship and League 1 level managers with not particularly impressive records we could hire.


    Haha, this is more off point I think you have ever been. Suddenly talking about Drogba and center forwards, after I responded "Solskjær struggled to keep the Molde job" to a post where you claimed Lampard was not good enough for us because you do not think his results with Derby are good enough. Even by your standards that is an Olympic gold medal.



  13. 7 hours ago, kev61 said:

    We could get rid of Barkley and Jorginho and not miss a beat - in fact it would be a boost.The Jorginho question fascinates me - he is absolutely useless in any role - he sticks out like a sore thumb as a pedestrian waste of space and for that reason I have to question what in God's name Sarri is thinking.

    Luiz would be a better player than Jorghino in the 'fulcrum' position - he is a better passer and more aggressive than a wet lettuce that is Jorginho.

    In fairness Sarri is making changes but you have to wonder is he sticking pins in selections that some people will do in the hope they will get a winner in the Cheltenham festival.

    Harsh. Jorginho is a one trick pony, a one touch passer and probably one of the best in the world at exactly that. For Sarri to play like he (only) wants to, he needs exactly that in that position. Sarri needs Jorginho, Jorginho needs Sarri. Without each other they won’t work. The problem is that even now, after 8 months together, the project does not seem to be working. It is not because Sarri’s tactics are «wrong» or because Jorginho is a bad player. It is because other teams too easily break down our tactics. Which most likely is a mix of Sarri not being adaptable enough and him not being efficient enough managing and motivating his players to do what he wants.

    Unless a fantastic end to the season, Sarri will be sacked and any new manager will consider Jorginho surplus.

    I hope we ditch this possession based football dream, and try to go back to what made us successful and feared. We need people at the club (managers and players first and foremost) representing and believing in the values and philosophy of Chelsea 2004-2012. Lampard the best option out there to come here and build something long-term. Academy needs to be used and patience needed at the top.

  14. On 12.3.2019 at 0:09 AM, Droy was my hero said:

    I can't imagine that happening at all.  They are only in a play off place now because Bristol city a point behind have a game in hand.  You can get 7/2 with Betfair now that they will finish 6th or above (playoff +)

    They may be 6th now (and 6th last year) but there is a chasing group of 8 clubs 6 or less points behind them, and you can bet they all fancy the chance of a playoff and a freak entry to the Prem.

    Love them both, but they'll struggle to keep the Derby job.


    Solskjær struggled to keep the Molde job.

  15. Transfer ban and Hazard gone likeliest scenario at the moment?

    2019/20 is then a building year. Can not see any other outcome than giving it to Lampard (+Morris). Bring back the best the loan army has to offer. Play the most talented regardless of age. Stop this nonsense possession football that neither is entertaining, effective or adapted to our squad. More power and mobility in midfield to press more aggressively. More direct attacking play with wingers with 1v1 initiative. And as long as we have CFs that at least are good finishers we might survive the biggest issue of this squad (goals). Something that o

    I think a squad like this can challenge (although likely miss out on) top 4, but with a CF, CB, LB, creative CM/AM next summer be a proper title contender.

    Kepa, Caballero, Bulka

    Azpi, James 
    Rudiger, Zouma
    Christensen, Luiz
    Emerson, Alonso

    Bakayoko, Barkley, Drinkwater
    Kanté, Ampadu
    RLC, Mount

    Pulisic, Willian
    Abraham, Giroud, Batshuayi
    CHO, Pedro

    Would love to see us line up with: Kepa - James, Rudiger, Christensen, Emerson - Mount, Kanté, RLC - Pulisic, Abraham, CHO

  16. Still seems unclear whether we can prolong Higuain or Kovacic’ loan deals under the potential transfer ban? 

    I think the rules limit us to registrering new players, and if we want to we are actually allowed to buy players (and either loan them out or not play them). The question is, by definition is Higuain and Kovacic already registered or will their registration expire once their loan deals expire? Higuain is an even more special case since we have the option to extend his deal or buy him, and I have seen reported that there even is a compulsory loan extension dependant on matches/goals targets being met. How does this come in to play? Is there a difference between taking up the option to extend Giroud’s contract and taking up the option to extend Higuain’s loan?

    Anyone with more insight than me that can shed som light on this crazy situation?

    As long as we can keep Higuain and we decide to continue with Sarri, I am not that concerned. Mire chances given to CHO, RLC, Mount, James and Tammy makes me quite enthusiastic.

  17. 2 hours ago, xCELERYx said:

    Will still heavily impact us given how many of our current loan crop are 21+. 

    Yeah, but I am not sure it would be a bad thing for us to start selling them off. And the loan army strategy has gradually been stepped down in the last couple of years, and died effectively with Emenalo's exit. We have basically stopped buying Atsus and Hectors. The older loanees like Omeruo, Kalas and Pasalic are just "old fun" we are trying to maximize the value of before selling them off. And of course the poor investments like Bakayoko and Morata, but they can both be considered sold.

    Batshuayi (30m), Bakayoko (35m), Kenedy (15m), Zouma (20m) - prices of course a bit hypothetical, but I would not be surprised if we got 100m for the quartet. Absolutely pointless to keep hold of assets with that kind of value, when we need to spend big money this summer. 


    Kalas, Pasalic, Miazga, Omeruo, Hector, Pantic, Nathan. All find themselves in the dark side of the loan army strategy, and will all have cost us money. Unless we believe their market value can suddenly increase massively, we should liquidate quicker than you can say Baba Rahman and Marco van Ginkel - who even if they were bought for the first team, find themselves in the same category. Should have been sold years ago.

    We should continue loaning academy players, and that will always be hit and miss, but we could do with a better strategy. Something that is easier when you have fewer players and a more homogeneous group to focus on. 

  18. 7 hours ago, Leo91 said:

    Hmmm. This isn't the first time Icardi has found himself in trouble. Great striker but I don't think his character is something that should be introduced to the Chelsea dressing room at this moment in time. 

    Agreed. Too many stories and too much fuss for me. There is probably a reason why no club activated his 100m buyout last summer after he had scored 29 serie a goals. And for me I am always skeptical towards CFs that scores a lot while their team is underperforming. 

  19. 10 hours ago, paulw66 said:

    Different game. 

    He was talking about 2005/06 when we were 1-0 down at HT and Eidur came on at half time and we won 5-1. Drogba 2, Lamps 2 and Eidur 1. 

    You are thinking of us beating Bolton 5-1 in 2001/02 when Lamps scored his first PL goal for Chelsea. Bolton lead, but we were ahead by HT


  20. 4 hours ago, Mark Kelly said:

    When he moved back into almost the midfield he was superb.

    Top class. Remember us trailing 0-1 to Bolton at the Bridge, when Eidur came on at HT in midfield and we ended up winning 5-1. One of the best halves I have ever seen us play.

  21. I think the main reason we did not sell Willian in the summer was because of Hazard. He gets on very well with him both on and off the pitch. This summer it will all be different, and I think we will and shall accept if someone bid over 40m. Pulisic is his direct replacement, and I do not think it will take him long to surpass Willian’s contribution level. 

    Hazard will need replacing, and the answer is not CHO. Way too early. And if we move him past Pedro in the hierarchy, from AM4 to AM3, that should be a good way of guaranteeing him the football he wants, and thus get him to sign an extension. Would imply going from around 1000 to roughly 2000-2500 minutes per season. That is a lot for a 19 yo at Chelsea.

    So if Hazard and Willian goes, we will have up to 150m to spend on a new world class LW/AM. That basically gets us every realistic target in the world.