Of Loans and Moans: The Great Chelsea Giveaway that Never Was

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I hear some grumblings in the Chelsea fandom over the Romelu Lukaku loan to Everton and Victor Moses’s loan to Liverpool. I’ve even read one or two calling for the sacking of Michael Emenalo and some saying Lukaku was shipped out because he missed a penalty and so on. Nothing can be further from the truth. Loaning out players to teams at the same level in the same league is not a deadline day decision. These are deals that have been discussed for weeks now and they are very much in order. Both clubs are top Premier League teams and the experience would be good for the young lads, rather than having them hanging around the Bridge with little or no playing time.

We also have to understand that loaning out players is a way of meeting the requirements of the UEFA Financial Fair Play Regulations, building relationships with other teams and keeping opportunities for developing the team without this being too much of a risk. Our loaned out players can’t play against us while they’d have the opportunity of impressing us by performing well against teams directly competing with us at the top. I know there are many who think Lukaku at least is ready to spearhead Chelsea’s attack; but, frankly, that is not true. Despite his hat-trick against Manchester United last season and his 17 goals overall (including penalties), he’s still a little rough at the edges, not yet the finished article and certainly not Didier Drogba. He’s just 20, so a loan move will only make him better, especially as his place in the Belgian national team isn’t jeopardised by being sent to Everton. The move can only help the remaining strikers at the Bridge focus better on the road ahead.

For those who believe Demba Ba ought to be the one to go out on loan, I say you have to give the Chelsea management the benefit of the doubt, because one thing is for sure, Jose Mourinho did not become the best manager of his generation by throwing away gold. If anything, his career has proved that he’s been highly professional in dealing with issues of this nature and in doing so, he has always put the interest of the players first, because he recognises them as the most important assets of the club, as far as they’re signed to the club. At Porto, eyebrows were raised when he picked up the third choice centre-back, Ricardo Carvalho and installed him first choice, after the player had been frustratingly out on loan with various clubs for four years. But, he stuck to his guns, because he knew the player was ready. Carvalho went on from there to win his first national cap, the UEFA Cup, the Champions League and got voted UEFA Best Defender of the Year 2004 on the back of Porto Footballer of the Year and Portuguese League Player of the Year awards in 2003. He’s never looked back since.

We certainly cannot afford to look at Lukaku and Ba with the starry-eyed perspective of their goal returns for only last year. We have to consider their entire history, circumstances and the potential, including what is best for each player at the moment. Lukaku was successful last season mainly because he was settled in a small team managed by someone who knew how to use him to the greatest effect. If we look at all West Bromwich Albion’s games that he scored in open play, the plays were usually overwhelmingly directed to him; everyone more or less played for him to score. He is not the Drogba type that will track back, be a nuisance to the opponent’s back four, intercept a pass or even take players on. Lukaku is strong and direct, but very limited. All said and done, whatever he achieved was in one season.

But look at Ba. Let’s not forget the depth of where he’s coming from. This was a guy who failed a medical at Stoke on the basis of a knee injury and who was signed on by West Ham on a pay as you play basis, because of the failed medical. But he was able to surmount all questions about his fitness by ending up top scorer at West Ham in 2011 with seven goals in 12 appearances. Then he moved to Newcastle where he spent one and half seasons scoring an impressive 29 times in 54 appearances. It was the performance that earned him a move to the Bridge. But, let’s be honest, he came with too much unnecessary pressure. Torres was not firing and we all thought he was the man to do it; yet they are two different types of players. In the end, he wasn’t given much playing time and his horrific nose injury at St James’s Park in February disrupted his development badly. So, really, he is yet to show what he can do in our colours.

Now, the point I’m making is that he’s more experienced than Lukaku and has achieved more in football and the Premier League than the Belgian. Mourinho would have looked at both of them and their history, looked at their age and the relative positions of their national teams (with Lukaku almost likely going to the World Cup and therefore needing playing time) and decided that he’s better off giving Ba a chance at Chelsea, because he is the older one with less time, the one more likely to be focused on club football now. This is because the Teranga Lions aren’t likely to qualify for the World Cup on their current form and it does not look like the impatient Alain Giresse, the Senegal national team manager has too much time for Ba. He has overlooked him for the last two matches, including not recalling him for the upcoming qualifier against Uganda, even at a time when Papiss Cisse is suspended. In fact, the manager has seemingly sealed Ba’s fate by calling up the young Henri Saivet of Bordeaux to take his place in the national team.

Mourinho is more patient with players like Ba. He would have thought that he’s the one to watch closely and medically and the one with a better pedigree and experience. He would have noted that Ba had performed well at every club he’s been in France, Belgium, Germany and England and would have reasoned that the reason he hasn’t performed as expected at Chelsea so far is most probably not because he isn’t good. Mourinho would love the challenge to get him firing again. He would have reasoned that though Lukaku performed well in one year at West Brom under Steve Clarke, he needs to see how he’d perform under a manager like Roberto Martinez who emphasises more play with the ball. In fact, I actually believe Martinez is a better coach than Moyes and that he will achieve better things with Everton than Moyes did and that can only help to boost the confidence of Lukaku who is easily going to be his number one striker. I also believe that while Lukaku can be a handful at times, he does not yet have the resilience to lead a team of Chelsea’s calibre at home and in Europe for a full season. I understand some of our fans’ worries about Samuel Eto’o and his age, but the veteran striker has kept himself fit and can still do a job. He certainly isn’t the force he was a few years ago, but he’s played recently under Mourinho, successfully winning the treble with him in Italy, so I don’t think it will take him time to understand what he needs to do here under Mourinho’s guidance. If he could adapt easily to Italian football from La Liga and from Serie A to the Russian league, I see no reason why he cannot adapt to the Premier League.

As for Torres, his salary and contract is such a huge one that only a top-level team in the Premier League or Europe can afford to take him, even on loan. Also, Mourinho has explained what he intends to do with him in terms of how to play him to get the best from him. Like all great managers, there’s that missionary streak in Mourinho, something telling him he can resurrect a player that everyone has given up on. But even then, I think he’s looked at Torres as a player well suited for our European campaigns and someone with more experience in that area than Lukaku with no experience at all. I’m thinking Mourinho is experimenting with this team till January. Depending on how they do, we may see a major overhaul thereafter. But I trust his judgement.

Even if we accept the worries expressed now by some fans as genuine, fact is we can only have a certain number of first team players and experience must count before anything. To invest the future of our season on a 20-year-old with only one good season in the Premier League playing for a mid-level team to me would be riskier than depending on the experience we have now to see us through. And while we are at it, spare a thought for 21-year-old Christian Atsu. The fellow had been at Porto since he was 17, had been sent on loan to Rio Ave during the 2011/12 season where he performed excellently, returned to Porto to finally claim a place in the team where he has again been outstanding only to be bought by Chelsea yesterday, signed to a five-year deal and then sent straight on loan to Vitesse Arnhem. We are talking an established international. So, compared to Atsu who is presently celebrating the opportunity to prove he can play for Chelsea, Lukaku is a lucky kid. If he passes the test at Everton, he’d be okay for his national team, go to the World Cup and return to be the new Drogba for our team. At that time too, the real Drogba would hopefully be back at Chelsea as a strikers’ coach and Lukaku at 21 can then begin to develop his own reputation as a Chelsea legend under the guidance of the great man or even on his own with bags of experience behind him. Ba is 28 with barely two or three more years left in him at this level, thus sending him on loan now would have been a waste for Chelsea.

So, really, this is the best decision. Of course, Lukaku may not be happy now; but he will be happy if he keeps his head down and listens to Martinez who can refine him as a striker. Remember that the raw Drogba from Marseille was already 26 before he signed for Chelsea. But Lukaku is just 20 and a year more on loan will make him 21 before he begins to play the kind of role Drogba played for us. We therefore need to be patient. Mourinho and the Chelsea coaches know what they are doing by not putting the pressure of carrying our season on his young shoulders. He needs to go to a club better than West Brom and with a manager with a different philosophy and playing style and that is Martinez at Everton. It’s the same principle that governed Moses’s loan to Liverpool. Mourinho trusts Brendan Rodgers not only to give him enough playing time for the sake of his World Cup place in the Super Eagles of Nigeria, but also to give him competition in a team comparable to Chelsea. They can only come back to us better. Mourinho has already defined his job on his Second Coming. He’s told anyone listening that he’s here to grow this young team into world-beaters. His actions with the loan deals indicate that he isn’t desperate. He’s done it to give the boys the best in the circumstances.

In fact, I believe all this hue and cry about strikers’ deficiency in the Chelsea team will prove to be merely alarmist at the end of the season. I think our play this season will be very robust, depending a lot on the creative and attacking midfielders to put in a great share of the goals, which is why all Mourinho’s talk about outcomes has been how to make people like Eden Hazard score more goals. Mourinho knows that managers and coaches find it difficult preparing against an average team where goals come from all areas of the field. One can only imagine their dread when that team is above average, like Chelsea. I believe once the season gets fully under way, we will show that we are a highly mobile team using experience and guile in attack and midfield to overcome teams. Anyone watching can see that the wily Mourinho is starting another football revolution, but people will only begin to take this seriously when he begins to win things. I’m very confident.

At any rate, let’s see how things go for a bit before we begin to press the panic button. I’m not saying we need to be happy with every decision by the Chelsea board or Chelsea management; but in matters like this, we have to give them the benefit of doubt and see how the team performs until January when we can recall any of the loaned out stars or strengthen the team more in vital areas if necessary. Chelsea have the biggest pool of young talent at the top level of the game in Europe, including having the most loaned out players. All Chelsea fans have to do is imagine the more than 23 boys out there on loan and how our team will look in say two or three years’ time when the best of some of these guys who’ve proved themselves on loan come back to lead the Chelsea campaign. This is the best way to invest in the future under the new UEFA Financial Fair Play rules. We buy a lot of players today, send those not in our immediate plans out on loan to good teams, get back the best of them later to people our team and sell the rest for profit when necessary. The club’s board and management are merely thinking ahead.

The future is bright. Let’s relax and enjoy this season. I’m supremely confident we’ll be the team to beat in the Premier League and I’m also confident we will go places in Europe.




There are 18 comments

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  1. Der_Kaiser

    Having a rare ‘agreeing’ with Kenn moment – must be the unusually warm weather 😉

    No issue at all with Lukaku going out on loan. The choice was easy – third pick behind Torres and Eto’o or regular Premiership football in a World Cup year; complete no-brainer for him. Any notion that he was going to come back and lead the line at a club competing for major European honours is just ridiculous – he’s only 20 and one good season at a mid-table club does not make an instant Drogba replacement. Michael Ricketts can boast a similar achievement. A quick look at the average age of the main strikers at clubs challenging for major honours across Europe tells its own story – there aren’t many 20 yr olds of that level about. Given the stupid money paid for the likes of Falcao and Cavani this summer, if we do have a future star on our hands in Lukaku, let’s not pile expectations upon him at an age where he is simply unlikely to meet them.

    (Worth noting that at Lukaku’s age, Drogba was still at Le Mans and Eto’o had only just stated to make an impact at Mallorca. Lukaku can spend a season on loan, come back and play for Chelsea for a decade and he’d still only be 31. Plenty of time.) As previously noted by the esteemed Blueboydave on the previous thread, should Sturridge and Lukaku be outscoring our two frontmen come Christmas, questions (rightly or wrongly) may be asked.

    Never been convinced by Ba, though. Reasonably decent player bought in only because Torres was so woeful, and generally looks out of his depth having taken a fairly big step up from the clubs he has previously played for (that’s Ba, not Torres. I think.) Jose will hopefully get more from him, but barring injuries to the other two he probably won’t see to much action this season.

    • GrocerJack

      Almost agree point for point with both you and Kenn as well. I think the Lukaku move is good for the lad, especially to the arguably bigger club that is Everton. I also think in Martinez he will get a really good coach on his side, adding guile to a game that seems primarily based on power. Drogba himself realised very quickly that power would not always see him through in the rough and tumble of top line premiership football, and a lot of his goals and contributions came from added guile and intelligence, added to power and skill.

      I do disagree on Ba however. I don’t think he got the run of games needed to show his full capability, much like Sturridge didn’t. In my view both deserved a shot at a decent run as Torres floundered repeatedly. Sturridge is scoring at Liverpool. as he did with Bolton, and it’s ridiculous to say it’s because he’s at a lower capability team. Scorers get goals and Sturridge does that. His only crime was appearing arrogant, and rightly making waves because neither RdM or Rafa would chance him for more than the odd game. I think similar for Ba, he just needs that run, and with that comes familiarization with other players in the heat of battle, something which can never be truly recreated in training. I’m sure Torres is amazing in training, as was Sheva, or Sutton, or Kezman or any number of other failed CFC strikers, but the true test comes in matches against real opponents. Ba was pretty much in a rubbish Newcastle side but still got regular goals and jhat for me counts as higher capability than say RvP scoring in a top side like MUFC.

      So good luck Romelu, have a great time at Everton, continue to learn your trade and then come back as a fully fledged Son of Drogba.

      Finally, Victor Moses was a decent squad player who git us some good goals in Europe but for me never set the team alight as I’m sure he could and should have done. Sadl y i think the move to Liverpool predates a Sturridge like repeat as he will surely gain regular first team football there. If he goes then he goes, when compared to our remaining options I’m not sure he had much of a place other than as a squad turn anyway.

      • Der_Kaiser

        Ba just strikes me as one of those players who shines at a club like Newcastle, but just hasn’t quite got the extra whatever it is to make it somewhere like Chelsea. Scott Parker syndrome. No great shame – good player with a decent record elsewhere at average mid-table clubs, but third choice here at best. Seems much better playing instinctively in front of goal than linking and being involved in build up play from what little I’ve seen.

        Don’t understand the Sturridge thing. If he stays at Liverpool in the long term it maybe answers some of the questions posed (perhaps unfairly) about attitude and so forth, but I’m assuming we had good reason to let him go (and I do note the presence of one F. Torres in the equation here).

  2. Cunningplan

    Find it hard to disagree with any of the points made from everyone so far. As much as I dislike the whole transfer window soap opera, I think our dealings have been pretty astute.

    I will add I’m surprised our lot didn’t have some sort of inkling that Ozil might be available after the Bale transfer.

    Nice to see you back as Tony I thought you might have gone as part of the Verizon deal.

      • Cunningplan

        I had a feeling that you had a decent windfall there, next time how about a heads up for some insider trading, no one will know as people never read this blog. (apart from stupid Spurs fans) 😉

        • GrocerJack

          Seriously Clive, we were the last to know. We saw the whopping price rise in the shares and assumed it was the 4G launch. Then we had an attack of common sense and realised the city couldn’t give a monkeys about new technologies, and then we saw the rumours on the FT website. As the ripples went round, the company saw sense and decided to make a (rare) public statement …to feed the frenzy and push the shares higher? You might think so, but I couldn’t possibly comment….

  3. Agh57

    I don’t have a problem with it in principle, but do we really think he’ll stay long term if he keeps getting loaned out every year?
    At the end of this season he’ll have completed 3 years of his 5 year deal (as I believe it to be the case), and we will no doubt sign at least one striker next season, At some point he’s going to think about going somewhere else where he can be first choice or at the very least have a bit more stability.

  4. bluebayou

    An interesting analysis. I had rather looked forward to watching Lukaku, but you have to hope they have his best interests at heart.

    Not sure JM opted for Ba over Lukaku. If some reports are to be believed they were encouraging him to stay. And were there not efforts to move Ba out?

    I’m not sure Ba was really ahead in the pecking order and that JM made any sort of choice of that nature. It seems likely that a combination of Eto’s arrival and Chelsea being unable to sell or loan out Ba made Lukaku’s mind up that he would get more regular football elsewhere, in a World Cup year.

    Rotating with Eto and Torres may have been enough to keep him, but with four plus Schurrle, even allowing for injuries, he must have felt he was better off on loan.

  5. limetreebower

    I’d think at this stage in his career/life all Lukaku wants is to play.

    In the longer term I’m sure he imagines himself playing for a Champions League club, so I doubt he’s going to demand a move to Stoke or wherever until someone makes it clear to him that he’s not going to cut the mustard at Chelsea. That’s not going to happen any time soon. So, everyone wins.

    (Incidentally — let’s not forget that St Drogba had some fairly dreadful games for us quite regularly, and the odd pretty average season, if we’re honest with ourselves.)

    Compare Courtois. Everything I read about him seems to suggest that he’s going to be a top-notch keeper. What’s wrong with loaning him to Atletico year after year? Is he really likely to refuse the chance to play for us, when-/if ever the time comes?

    I don’t know how much we paid for Courtois but I bet he was a lot cheaper when we bought him than he’d be if we had to buy him now, or in five years when Big Pete may be slowing down a bit and Courtois may be one of the better goalies in Europe.

    It’s not a complicated policy. Buy young, loan out, hope you end up with a Chelsea player, sell if you don’t. Hard to see the flaw, really.

  6. Kennedy Emetulu

    ..

    One thing about transfers and loan deals is that we or the snooping press usually do not get
    the full picture from those directly involved, not only because of the contractual underpinnings of the transactions, but also because the whole engagement is an extension of the competition between clubs by other means. It is a market where opponents ensure, wherever they can do so, that their rivals do not have the best playing resources to compete against them. Viewed that way, Jose’s quote that he blocked the Ba loan deal to Arsenal upon learning that Ozil was joining them, because that would have made them title challengers would be a traditional rival’s response. Except that long before then, Jose had consistently listed Arsenal amongst genuine title contenders. While I’m not sure he said the things attributed to him, what I have come to believe after considering all the available facts is that the quote (if true) is Jose the master of transfer mind-games and football abracadabra at work.

    My reading of the situation is that Chelsea were never going to let Ba go out on loan. Of course, several clubs were sniffing around the Bridge on deadline day, because they knew we had a raft of good players that wouldn’t be making the first team, but the idea of singling Arsenal out as front-runners for Ba when we knew Napoli, West Ham, Valencia, Tottenham and so on were making inquiries of him is just transfer politics aimed at the team that is the topmost competitor amongst them. Jose was never going to loan to a club in the Champions League and one that have showed they were direct competitors for the Premiership title and actually looking the part three games into the season. Jose would never loan a player of Ba’s calibre to a team of Arsenal’s pedigree. Indeed, if there were discussions, all that would be Jose and Chelsea stringing them along, just keeping them on the negotiation table to ensure they end up with a striker short at the end of the day. Yes, your rivals punish you for not doing your transfer business on time, because that’s what the competition is about. Jose kept them believing in the possibility, leaked to the press the possibility, but left them holding on to thin air when he knew they had no possibilities anymore as the window shuts.

    There was never a plan to let both Ba and Lukaku out on loan at once. One of them was going to go with Moses. Once the new arrivals started coming in, Moses knew he was further down the pecking order and there was no problem with him being told early as his position was quite obvious. Also, he was fine with it when Mourinho made a great arrangement for him with Liverpool. However, between Ba and Lukaku, it was always Lukaku pencilled down for a loan, but Mourinho was never going to inform him before deadline day for obvious reasons. The boy had been looking forward to starting with the Chelsea first team and telling him anything before then would have affected his morale and his performance in pre-season. It was better to tell him at a time he wouldn’t have much time to twiddle his fingers or feel sorry for himself, at a time he’d need to make a quick decision about his future. Again, Mourinho made the best arrangement for him and when it was time to tell him, it went well and the boy is grateful.

    The mythologization of the Ozil story as one started and concluded in hours on deadline day is just one if those things the press does to jazz up the day. However, the clear-eyed truth is no one decides in a couple of hours on deadline day to fork out more than £42.5m on a player on national duty. Football business might be anything, but they aren’t using Monopoly money to run it. Anyone reading Wenger’s cryptic comments and body language earlier would have since realised that there was a deal already. The problem was Bale’s transfer. Arsenal and Madrid had since reached this deal in confidence and were keen not to leak it until Bale’s transfer from Arsenal’s North London rivals to Madrid was through. This is because not only were Tottenham going to go for Ozil as part of the Bale move, if they’d found out about Madrid’s deal with Arsenal, they would have pulled the plug on the Bale move and stopped everything in its tracks. The reason Ozil’s deal was seemingly concluded on deadline day was because Bale’s move to Madrid was late and the former had to happen after the latter for reasons stated.

    Anyone who believes that Jose or Chelsea just knew about the deal a few hours before the close of the window and that this was what influenced Mourinho to block the Ba to Arsenal deal may not have been following. Days before the move, Madrid fans were already protesting against the sale of Ozil and they voiced their protest louder while they were unveiling Bale. Alvaro Arbeloa and some of his Madrid mates report that Ozil had already said his goodbyes and told them by Sunday that he was on his way to Arsenal. So, how can anyone think that Jose didn’t know all this? Of course he knew. The quote attributed to him, if true, is only his own attempt at throwing people off the scent and complimenting a player he brought from Werder Bremen to the big time in Madrid and who is now joining him in a new league but with a rival club.

    Once it was confirmed that we weren’t going to get Shrek, Mourinho was not going to let Ba go on loan anywhere. That didn’t mean there were no inquiries on transfer deadline day or some jaw-jawing between Chelsea and interested parties, including Arsenal; but Chelsea’s response to all that would not have been with the genuine intention of doing a deal. It could only have been Mourinho and his people playing football politics and ensuring that our opponents are not strengthened further before the end of the transfer deadline by keeping them on the negotiation table when they knew nothing would come of it. It’s a legitimate tactic and we used
    it.

    ….

  7. Blueboydave

    I’m sure you’re right , Kenn, about lots of already done deals not being publicly announced till very late in the transfer window for tactical reasons, with a knock-on effect on other transfers dependent on that first one.

    Indeed, in parts of the Jim White Pantomime Last day Show that I saw, Peterborough chairman, Darragh MacAnthony admitted as much in some rare moments of honesty about the whole charade.

    When Jim White was going into overdrive about Fellaini’s sudden training ground appearance to lodge a transfer request with 2 hours to go, his response was that it was just to make Everton look good and the deal with Man United was already done. Similarly, he asserted later that the McCarthy to Everton deal was simply waiting on the Fellaini deal going through, with some window dressing about the price, which provoked Jim White to phone his mates at the clubs to offer denials of this spoilsport attempt at inserting some reality.

    However, I’m not convinced that we’ve been masterly controllers of our transfer business this window. If so, why did we give Hilario a new 1-year contract as recently as August 1st, if we knew he was going to draw one of the short straws for both EPL and CL squads.

    Similarly, if the intention was always to loan out Lukaku and keep Ba why did we not shift someone else or loan out Michael Essien rather than now leave him unavailable for CL too?

  8. Kennedy Emetulu

    ..

    Thank you for your comment, Blueboydave. I think the idea of a team being in control of their
    transfer business is relative, but surely most independent observers would say our transfer business this season compared to say Manchester United or Arsenal has been excellent. We wrapped up every deal we wanted early and when the Anzhi bomb detonated in the middle of the window, we were quickly there to pick up the best. Our whole show over Rooney was merely a water-testing exercise, because the player indicated he was available, even though in the end, his heart failed him. We lost nothing by trying.

    I’m actually not sure about the point you’re making with Hilario’s one year contract extension. The chap is 37 years old, has only started 33 times and made 4 substitute appearances in a Chelsea shirt for the past five years and his contract was already over. The man only played the Community Shield game throughout last season. He was never a key member of the squad at any time, even though the club from time to time find his experience useful as a goalkeeper. The extension was just a way of making sure we have enough goalkeepers in the squad if necessary.

    Fact is the goalkeeping department is not an area we lack top quality resources. Petr Cech is still one of the world’s best and presently we have one of the best in young Thibaut Courtois on loan at Athletico Madrid. We signed the vastly experienced Mark Shwarzer and brought in young Jamal Blackman. Giving Hilario a one-year extension was necessary after we released Ross Turnbull, who at 28 and after four years at the club needs first team action somewhere else. I mean, it’s obvious that the club’s goalkeeping future is in the hands of Courtois and Blackman, even though for now the two key keepers for the campaign are Cech and Schwarzer. Hilario’s deal has no great bearing to the issue here.

    Also, the fact that Michael Essien is not included in the club’s 25-man Champions League squad for the group stage is not an issue. We all know Essien. He has nothing to prove to anybody, but he’s certainly not the player he once was, because of age and injury. He’s one of Mourinho’s favourite players and persons and the fact that he isn’t included in the squad for the group stage of the Champions League could be for a number of reasons. We have good players for his position, he might be the extra midfield player Mourinho speaks about when talking about the balance of the squad in terms of two persons per position or he may be nursing some form of injury or may have been assessed as not dependable at this stage because of his history with injury, etc. All this does not mean he is not available for Premiership or other games of the campaign neither does it mean he cannot be available for the latter stages of the Champions League if we qualify from the group stage. It’s just that we have to submit a squad of 25 at this stage and someone would have to be left out. Only Mourinho and the coaching crew know their reason(s). All we are interested in is that at every point in time, they should be making the right decision for the club.

    Personally, I’m happy with how we’ve done our transfer business and the quality and composition of our squad for this campaign. Let’s see how things go till January.

    CHEERS!

    …..

  9. bluebayou

    I’m sure you’ve all read this avidly, but here are a couple of pieces from the official website in which non other than Mr Emenalo talks about how Chelsea are structuring their squad including thoughts on the whys and wherefores of their purchases and loans.

    http://www.chelseafc.com/news-article/article/3451487/title/emenalo-plans-in-place

    http://www.chelseafc.com/news-article/article/3452299/title/emenalo-plans-in-place—part-two

    With the return of JM, it can be forgotten that there seems to have a been a plan in place for a couple of seasons with regards to avoiding the problems that really hit hard in the second year of Ancelotti’s reign. Some would disagree perhaps, but Emenalo appears to have been integral to this process, or at least is put up by the club to explain their thinking. There’s also Granovskaia who seems to be involved in negotiating deals and whose position within the football club as opposed to RA’s general business interests seems to have grown. It seems fair to assume that she was involved in negotiating for Rooney as well as moves to offload squad players.

    While Jose must have a reasonable level of involvement in looking at potential players and nominating those whose services he doesn’t require, I’d wonder how much he is involved in day to day negotiating tactics. Squad development certainly seems to have had an over-arching strategy, which with few exceptions seems unlikely to change in the near future.

    And here’s some interesting info on the salary levels of the squad. I assume it’s relatively accurate and certainly was an eye-opener at the differentials that exist between what we view as key members of the team.

    This comes from the ever interesting We ‘Aint Got No History site

    http://www.weaintgotnohistory.com/2013/9/4/4659496/chelsea-player-wage-database


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