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Sleeping Dave

Chelsea Squad 09/10

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I know it is still early days and there is plenty of time left before mid-July to have some real surprises coming through but I was wondering about how our squad might look next season. There are some issues to keep in mind. ACN is one. Squad size is a second. Age a third.

We also need to make some pretty tough calls on a number of players. Even though Malouda finished extremely well, he was largely lethargic for 2/3 of the season. Anelka completely disappeared for a 3 month spell mid through and Riccy has had yet another injury ridden season. Also, are we going to give Sinclair, Mancienne, Di SAanto and Stoch a proper chance or should they be shipped out on loan again? What about the goalkeeper situation? Hilario might be on his way out, leaving Cech as the only senior keeper… Clearly that is not enough given that he has had some injuries over the last seasons as well. We are definitely in for an exciting summer.

So who have we been linked to? Kaka, Pato, Ribery, David Silva, David Villa, Sturridge, A Young, G Johnson, R Turnbull, Pirlo, Xabi Alonso, Tevez, Adebayor, Fabregas, Arnautovic, Zhirkov, Aguero to mention a few. Another issue is what formation will Ancelotti use? I do not believe he’ll go for 4-4-2, either a flat or diamond. I do not think our squad is well shaped for that and a diamond does not fit PL especially well as you need width and ability to play on the break. I think he’ll either stick with the 4-3-3 we’ve used for a number of seasons now or possibly his 4-3-2-1 formation (also known as the X-mas tree) from his Milan days.

In my opinion we need reinforcements in a number of positions. We need a back-up left back, a new 2nd choice GK, some creative attacking players of true class and possibly also another striker/forward. Here’s my suggestion for our squad next year (23 + 3 goalkeepers):

Goalkeepers:

P. Cech, 2nd choice GK, Hilario

Comment: Petr is still untouchable and he will clearly be our first choice in the future as well. However, I do not think we should let Hilario leave. He can continue to be out 3rd choice as I do not think we have any young GK in at the club that would be able to step up in a worst case scenario with Cech and our 2nd choice out injured. I have no idea who the new GK should be though… Turnbull I’ve seen too little of to comment on.

In: New 2nd GK

Out: None

Right Back:

J. Bosingwa, P Ferreira/G Johnson

Comment: The rumours about G Johnson makes little sense. We are rumoured to want him for £17m. We bought Boss for £17m. They are very similar in style and have the same strengths/weaknesses. For me it was madness to sell Johnson to start with and I think it is well known among older CFCnet members on this site what I think of him. I hold G Johnson in very high regard and would not mind having him back at all. That would be on the expense of P Ferreira in that case although he could perhaps provide back-up on LB for Cole. But again, £17m is steep considering we already paid £6m for him once... Has had a tremendous season though and really showed what he can do when he has a manager to who believes in him. He has developed exactly as I suspected.

In: Possibly Johnson

Out: Possibly Ferreira

Left Back:

A Cole, P Ferreira/Y Zhirkov

Comment: Ferreira is easy to have in the squad. Rarely complains and is a great squad player. However, should Cole be away for a lengthy period Ferreira can’t fill in all season… I feel we need a better 2nd choice. I really like Zhirkov and he can also fill in perfectly on left wing. But he would not be first choice on the left wing and is too good to only play 15-20 games a season. Would also come at a hefty price. Don’t think Bertrand (although he is supposed to have been ok at Norwich) is ready to take a back-up role at the club either but again, I haven’t seen him enough to pass serious judgement.

In: Possibly Zhirkov, possibly Bertrand

Out: None

Centre Back:

J Terry, R Carvalho, B Ivanovic, M Mancienne

Comment: Sell Alex and let Terry and Riccy continue their partnership. Ivanovic is a great prospect to fill Riccy’s void when he’s injured/retired and has age on his side. Alex I like, but it will be impossible to keep all 4 established happy as well as giving Mancienne his deserved chance. It’s time to make some decisions and out of Alex and Ivanovic I prefer Ivanovic. Mancienne to be 4th choice.

In: None

Out: Alex

Central Mid:

F Lampard, M Essien, M Ballack, J Mikel, J Cork

Comment: Might be light as we have ACN this year but Malouda and Joe Cole can fill in as well. Jack Cork is deserved of a chance to be part of the squad. Deco and Mineiro as almost certain to leave. Not much else to say. Our central mid has been our strongest part for a number of seasons now.

In: Cork

Out: Deco, Mineiro

Offensive Mid/Wing:

Ribery, Aguero/Pato/Arnautovic, J Cole, F Malouda, M Stoch

Comment: This is where I’d put in most investment. Ribery is a favorite of mine and he has tremendous work ethic as well. Think he’d fit in very well with us. For the second position I have three names. Aguero is perhaps only a dream as he’d probably prefer to stay in Spain… Pato could also be an option. I’ve seen him live at San Siro a few times and he is very very good, while this Arnautovic fella might be a real gem in the future. J Cole is also back from his injury and Stoch deserves another crack as a squad player. Malouda should definitely stay. His form improved immensely after Hiddink took over and he was our best player in the run-in together with Drogba and Lampard.

Strikers:

D Drogba, N Anelka, S Kalou/D Sturridge

Comment: I’d either keep Kalou or go for a young option like Sturridge… Not sure yet but seems like Kalou is not going to be much more expensive in terms of salary but Sturrridge obviously have the benefit of being English… Di Santo I would let go. What a huge mistakle he has been. I have not been impressed by him one single time and he seem to be copmpletely out of depth. He has no real edge (speed, technique, aerial play, movement) and I see nothing that would suggest that he will make it at this level.

In: Possibly Sturridge

Out: Di Santo, possibly Kalou

Squad 09/10:

GK: P Cech, 2nd GK, Hilario

RB: Bosingwa, Johnson/Ferreira

LB: Cole, Ferreira/Zhirkov

CB: Terry, Riccy, Ivanovic, Mancienne

CM: Lampard, Essien, Ballack, Mikel, Cork

OM: Ribery, Malouda, Aguero/Pato/Arnautovic, J Cole, Stoch

S: Drogba, Anelka, Kalou/Sturridge

21 players + 3 goalkeepers.

Possible first XI:

----------------Cech

-Bosingwa Terry Riccy Cole

----Lampard Mikel Essien

----------Ribery Aguero

---------------Drogba

Thoughts?

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Nicos   
I know it is still early days and there is plenty of time left before mid-July to have some real surprises coming through but I was wondering about how our squad might look next season. There are some issues to keep in mind. ACN is one. Squad size is a second. Age a third.

We also need to make some pretty tough calls on a number of players. Even though Malouda finished extremely well, he was largely lethargic for 2/3 of the season. Anelka completely disappeared for a 3 month spell mid through and Riccy has had yet another injury ridden season. Also, are we going to give Sinclair, Mancienne, Di SAanto and Stoch a proper chance or should they be shipped out on loan again? What about the goalkeeper situation? Hilario might be on his way out, leaving Cech as the only senior keeper… Clearly that is not enough given that he has had some injuries over the last seasons as well. We are definitely in for an exciting summer.

So who have we been linked to? Kaka, Pato, Ribery, David Silva, David Villa, Sturridge, A Young, G Johnson, R Turnbull, Pirlo, Xabi Alonso, Tevez, Adebayor, Fabregas, Arnautovic, Zhirkov, Aguero to mention a few. Another issue is what formation will Ancelotti use? I do not believe he’ll go for 4-4-2, either a flat or diamond. I do not think our squad is well shaped for that and a diamond does not fit PL especially well as you need width and ability to play on the break. I think he’ll either stick with the 4-3-3 we’ve used for a number of seasons now or possibly his 4-3-2-1 formation (also known as the X-mas tree) from his Milan days.

In my opinion we need reinforcements in a number of positions. We need a back-up left back, a new 2nd choice GK, some creative attacking players of true class and possibly also another striker/forward. Here’s my suggestion for our squad next year (23 + 3 goalkeepers):

Goalkeepers:

P. Cech, 2nd choice GK, Hilario

Comment: Petr is still untouchable and he will clearly be our first choice in the future as well. However, I do not think we should let Hilario leave. He can continue to be out 3rd choice as I do not think we have any young GK in at the club that would be able to step up in a worst case scenario with Cech and our 2nd choice out injured. I have no idea who the new GK should be though… Turnbull I’ve seen too little of to comment on.

In: New 2nd GK

Out: None

Right Back:

J. Bosingwa, P Ferreira/G Johnson

Comment: The rumours about G Johnson makes little sense. We are rumoured to want him for £17m. We bought Boss for £17m. They are very similar in style and have the same strengths/weaknesses. For me it was madness to sell Johnson to start with and I think it is well known among older CFCnet members on this site what I think of him. I hold G Johnson in very high regard and would not mind having him back at all. That would be on the expense of P Ferreira in that case although he could perhaps provide back-up on LB for Cole. But again, £17m is steep considering we already paid £6m for him once... Has had a tremendous season though and really showed what he can do when he has a manager to who believes in him. He has developed exactly as I suspected.

In: Possibly Johnson

Out: Possibly Ferreira

Left Back:

A Cole, P Ferreira/Y Zhirkov

Comment: Ferreira is easy to have in the squad. Rarely complains and is a great squad player. However, should Cole be away for a lengthy period Ferreira can’t fill in all season… I feel we need a better 2nd choice. I really like Zhirkov and he can also fill in perfectly on left wing. But he would not be first choice on the left wing and is too good to only play 15-20 games a season. Would also come at a hefty price. Don’t think Bertrand (although he is supposed to have been ok at Norwich) is ready to take a back-up role at the club either but again, I haven’t seen him enough to pass serious judgement.

In: Possibly Zhirkov, possibly Bertrand

Out: None

Centre Back:

J Terry, R Carvalho, B Ivanovic, M Mancienne

Comment: Sell Alex and let Terry and Riccy continue their partnership. Ivanovic is a great prospect to fill Riccy’s void when he’s injured/retired and has age on his side. Alex I like, but it will be impossible to keep all 4 established happy as well as giving Mancienne his deserved chance. It’s time to make some decisions and out of Alex and Ivanovic I prefer Ivanovic. Mancienne to be 4th choice.

In: None

Out: Alex

Central Mid:

F Lampard, M Essien, M Ballack, J Mikel, J Cork

Comment: Might be light as we have ACN this year but Malouda and Joe Cole can fill in as well. Jack Cork is deserved of a chance to be part of the squad. Deco and Mineiro as almost certain to leave. Not much else to say. Our central mid has been our strongest part for a number of seasons now.

In: Cork

Out: Deco, Mineiro

Offensive Mid/Wing:

Ribery, Aguero/Pato/Arnautovic, J Cole, F Malouda, M Stoch

Comment: This is where I’d put in most investment. Ribery is a favorite of mine and he has tremendous work ethic as well. Think he’d fit in very well with us. For the second position I have three names. Aguero is perhaps only a dream as he’d probably prefer to stay in Spain… Pato could also be an option. I’ve seen him live at San Siro a few times and he is very very good, while this Arnautovic fella might be a real gem in the future. J Cole is also back from his injury and Stoch deserves another crack as a squad player. Malouda should definitely stay. His form improved immensely after Hiddink took over and he was our best player in the run-in together with Drogba and Lampard.

Strikers:

D Drogba, N Anelka, S Kalou/D Sturridge

Comment: I’d either keep Kalou or go for a young option like Sturridge… Not sure yet but seems like Kalou is not going to be much more expensive in terms of salary but Sturrridge obviously have the benefit of being English… Di Santo I would let go. What a huge mistakle he has been. I have not been impressed by him one single time and he seem to be copmpletely out of depth. He has no real edge (speed, technique, aerial play, movement) and I see nothing that would suggest that he will make it at this level.

In: Possibly Sturridge

Out: Di Santo, possibly Kalou

Squad 09/10:

GK: P Cech, 2nd GK, Hilario

RB: Bosingwa, Johnson/Ferreira

LB: Cole, Ferreira/Zhirkov

CB: Terry, Riccy, Ivanovic, Mancienne

CM: Lampard, Essien, Ballack, Mikel, Cork

OM: Ribery, Malouda, Aguero/Pato/Arnautovic, J Cole, Stoch

S: Drogba, Anelka, Kalou/Sturridge

21 players + 3 goalkeepers.

Possible first XI:

----------------Cech

-Bosingwa Terry Riccy Cole

----Lampard Mikel Essien

----------Ribery Aguero

---------------Drogba

Thoughts?

Great Post, real indepth assessment. I agree in the main with the majority of your points, however we really are unlikely to sign Aguero/Ribbery/Villa et all. I think that we will struggle to sign "headline" players as Citeh can easliy match us for fee and wages and many owners of top class sides are reluctant to deal with Chelsea in the marketplace. We are despearte for depth and whilst we have "cover" we dont have "like for like" cover. If we lose Lamps for a month we would suffer (as we did with Essien), Drogba/Terry/A Cole etc.

We need to blood youngsters without buying players like Ashley Young for £stupid who in my opinion will be a second rate SWP. I think Riccy will go to Inter as may Mikel and Deco (remember him).

One of the problems of being a Chelsea fan is that over the last few years its becoem quite "Vouge" to "reject" Chelsea ... even if no offer has ever been made!!

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pinoy   

Squad 09/10:

GK: P Cech, 2nd GK, Hilario

RB: Bosingwa, Belletti, Ferreira

LB: Cole, Ferreira, Zhirkov

CB: Terry, Ivanovic, Mancienne, Alex

CM: Lampard, Essien, Ballack, Mikel, sessesgnon

OM: Ribery, Malouda, Zhirkov, J Cole, Stoch, Hazard

S: Drogba, Anelka, Dzeko, Shevchenko, Sturridge

Possible first XI:

--------------------------------Cech-----------------

-Bosingwa ----------Terry -----------Alex--------Cole-

---- ---------Lampard-------Mikel----- Essien----

Ribery-------------------------------------------------Zhirkov--

------------------------------Drogba----------------------------

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Buraz13   

I'd be over the moon if we ''only'' sign Agüero, also I hope Cork and kakuta (when he's recovered) get some playing time as well as Di Santo rather then buying any more foreign youngsters, Sinclair... still hoping he can turn out to be good...

But still wont say no to new signings :)

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Codger   
Great Post, real indepth assessment.
Could you please trim your posts in future? Quoting the entire post, particularly one as long as that one, makes reading the thread harder for everyone. Thanks.

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Keyrun   
Squad 09/10:

GK: P Cech, 2nd GK, Hilario

There's surely little point in bringing in a second goalkeeper? Unless they are significantly better than Hilario, a decent price and willing to sit on the bench I'd keep Hilario as second choice with Taylor, Heimann and Sebek rotating. That might be an idealistic viewpoint, but I can't think of anyone of Hilario's ability who would want to play second fiddle.

RB: Bosingwa, Johnson/Ferreira

Ferreira should be ousted, he's good enough for a top ten PL team, so let him go play some football. Johnson would be a mistake, we let him go for a reason and whilst I agree he is a quality player, it would be money thrown away on a player we don't need. If needs be, bring in someone younger, cheaper, but why not stick with Mancienne and Bran as cover?

LB: Cole, Ferreira/Zhirkov

I'd take Zhrikov as he can cover all down the left flank, not a bad option. Just all depends on the price I suppose.

CB: Terry, Riccy, Ivanovic, Mancienne

If we get a good offer for Riccy, I'd take it. He's seemingly injury prone and the wrong side of 30. Alex has been fantastic in his absence and it would be a massive slap in the face if we were to boot him out.

CM: Lampard, Essien, Ballack, Mikel, Cork

I'd agree with this, would rather Ballack would go, but too late for that eh?

OM: Ribery, Malouda, Aguero/Pato/Arnautovic, J Cole, Stoch

Some dream signings there really, would say no to any of them really, but I'd imagine Young is alot more likely than Pato or Ribery. Who knows, its all up in the air.

S: Drogba, Anelka, Kalou/Sturridge

I'd keep Di Santo, he's only 19 and has hardly had much of a chance in the year and a half he's been here (If I'm wrong on this, do correct me). I'd class Aguero as a striker rather than an AM, so he'd go here. Then you'd have Sturridge (As long as he doesn't want stupid money) and Di Santo as backup. Kalou is then third choice for AM as well.

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Keyrun   
What about Belletti? Also selling Di Santo is just plain stupid.

Ah forgot about Belletti! If he's happy with his role at the club, keep him. He's not got long left but he's still a decent player. Although if we get an offer for him, we'd have to consider it.

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I'll cry if we buy Johnson. We've only just managed to get our right back situation right this year, and now they want to f*** it up by throwing in another for 17 mil?

I bloody well hope it's just rumours.

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Squad 09/10:

GK: P Cech, 2nd GK, Hilario

RB: Bosingwa, Belletti, Ferreira

LB: Cole, Ferreira, Zhirkov

CB: Terry, Ivanovic, Mancienne, Alex

CM: Lampard, Essien, Ballack, Mikel, sessesgnon

OM: Ribery, Malouda, Zhirkov, J Cole, Stoch, Hazard

S: Drogba, Anelka, Dzeko, Shevchenko, Sturridge

Possible first XI:

--------------------------------Cech-----------------

-Bosingwa ----------Terry -----------Alex--------Cole-

---- ---------Lampard-------Mikel----- Essien----

Ribery-------------------------------------------------Zhirkov--

------------------------------Drogba----------------------------

I can't believe people are dropping Anelka in their teams...

I'd have him over Drogba for the season any day.

Obviously Drogba, on his day, is the best in the world, but we rarely see that day anymore...

Same for Malouda... Replace him with Zhirkov? No way...

He's playing in the russian league... Ok, Arshavin made it, but that's Arshavin & he's a special player - Zhirkov isn't.

We should be 4-4-2 Next season imo...

Cech

Bosingwa Terry Carvalho Cole

Essien Lampard

Ribery Malouda

Anelka

Drogba

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