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1.22K   //    13 Aug 2010, 12:32 IST
Chelsea FC

Chelsea FC

Chelsea football club would be beginning the English football season this time in an unexpected situation . They would be defending both the Barclays premier league and the FA cup and it has been predicted by almost all the pundits that they would be having a really tough time doing so. This time, the major focus of the entire Chelsea squad would be to win that single trophy which has been eluding them for many years , the Champions League . With Anelka and other Chelsea players publicly stating their desire to win the champions league , it can be assumed that this task is their top priority . So lets have a brief look at what is in store for Chelsea .

TRANSFERS CLOCKWATCH: Ancelotti and Chelsea management have made a very bold but strong move of encouraging youngsters from this season which resulted in departure of Deco, Michael Ballack, and Belleti who were deemed surplus. Joe Cole and Ricardo carvaljo were lost as they were not ready to commit to stamford bridge and move elsewhere. Hence the management had a busy time in the transfer market . Their first marquee signing, Yossi Benayoun is primed to be a big hit at the blues due to his articulate passing, soft touches and great dribbling skills . Chelsea have missed a creative player for a long time, playing sometimes one dimensional football. Ramirez , snapped up recently from Benfica could yet be the buy of the season as he is extremely talented and a hardworking midfielder. With Essien back and with Bosingwa regaining fitness, there are actually many players coming back to action for Chelsea than the transfer window suggests. And as I am writing this article, it has been almost confirmed that Chelsea have secured the signing of the Santos striker Nilmar, a great acquisition, considering the fact that the strike force of the Chelsea team is ageing. Overall, a good transfer period for Chelsea .

THE TEAM : Chelsea have retained their core group of players for many seasons which speaks volumes of the commitment the players have towards the team. However, the rest of the squad has been fairly inconsistent. However with many players returning from injury, Ancelotti expects the entire group of players to be fit as the season progresses. With the departure of Carvalho and the unsettled position of Ashley Cole, the Chelsea defence looks highly vulnerable. John Terry is not the same player he used to be and the focus of all the defensive activities would be Branislav Ivanovic, a talented defender. Expect Chelsea to concede goals unless they make a crucial buy before the transfer window closes .

The midfield and the attack department is studded with top players. The midfield looks stronger than ever and might be one of the strongest midfield line up in Europe . With the likes of Lampard, Ramirez, Essien, Obi Mikel, Benayoun and Malouda in the ranks, Chelsea seems to be going for an attacking brand of football this season. The strike department would be highly bolstered by the coming of nilmar which already possesses the likes of Drogba, Anelka and Sturridge .

Chelsea have been significantly investing in the youth development and a number of promising youngsters might get a chance to don the blue shirt this season. Kakuta and Borini looks set to make their first league start this season. Apart from them, more promising youngsters like Kalac are being groomed for future seasons .

PREDICTION :  With the increasing competition in the league every season, the times of a two horse race has long become extinct. There are possibly 6 teams who can seriously challenge for the title. And with no easy matches, Chelsea might find it very difficult to cope up with the added burden of winning the champions league which is their topmost priority .


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