At least as far as the last two seasons go, if anyone was going to be tipped for the English Premier League crown, not too many names would be mentioned in the same bracket as Manchester City and Liverpool.
For the past two seasons, those two have dominated the English top-flight in such spectacular fashion that it was hard to see anyone challenging or cutting their dominance anytime soon.
But with what the recent stunts Chelsea have been pulling in the transfer market, it seems someone is finally ready to take the fight to the Sky Blues and the Reds.
First, it was Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner before the 19/20 season ramped up. Then, not long after their FA Cup and UCL heartbreaks, Chelsea continued their spree, following up Ziyech and Werner’s deals with the acquisition of Leicester City’s Ben Chilwell, Malang Sarr (who’s been sent back on loan by the way), and Thiago Silva. And just a few days ago, the club announced the signing of Kai Havertz (HiKai), a player they’ve chased all window.
Wow, all in all, that’s six players already in one window.
Seems like someone seriously means business!
But is this enough to challenge the dominance of Liverpool and Man City? Let’s find out!
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What do the signings bring?
They bring goals, assists, and depth.
And they bring them in big numbers.
Looking at how each of the signings has fared at their previous clubs, one can only conclude that Chelsea have really made some smart buys. In the recently concluded 19/20 season alone, the trio of Timo Werner, Kai Havertz, and Hakim Ziyech scored a joint total of 51 goals and supplied a further 33 assists, with Werner contributing twenty-nine goals and ten assists, Havertz banging in fourteen goals and seven assists, and Ziyech chipping in with eight goals and sixteen assists.
Are we forgetting Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell?
Oh, how can we?
For many years now, the Brazilian has been perceived as one of the best center-backs in the game, regularly getting mentioned in the same brackets as the Sergio Ramos’ and Gerard Piques of this world. Although many may argue that the former AC Milan captain is past his prime, his performances are still up there with the very best. And this was there for all to see at the just concluded UCL campaign, wherein he led PSG to the final.
Of course, Ben Chilwell needs no formal introduction. At least for the better parts of the last few seasons, it’s accurate to say the English international has been one of the standout performers in his position in the league. Renowned for his constant bumps up and down the left flank, the former Leicester man is always a constant threat in and around the opposition’s box with his pace, strong left foot, and massive engine.
Might be Chelsea’s season?
Although it remains to be seen whether all of Chelsea’s signings will continue their fine form at the London club, their arrival does pose a serious threat to those at the top of the table.
Think about it, If Chelsea could claim the top-four spot with players like Willian, Giroud, and Abraham leading the line; Zouma, Rudiger, and Alonso fielding the backline; Mount, Gilmour, and Kovacic handling the midfield.
How much more will they do with an attacking outlet of Pulisic, Havertz, Werner, and ZIyech, and a backline of Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell?
Obviously better than last season. And better, in this case, would mean climbing higher up the table – that is, challenging the guys in the first, second, and third positions.
What the experts say
Although fans are quite excited and optimistic about the prospects that these signings bring, many experts, analysts, and pundits believe it might be too early to call Chelsea a genuine title contender. ESPN’s Julien Laurens is one of those who believe it might be too early.
“I think this season is too early to compete with Man City even without Lionel Messi, and with Liverpool, I still think they are too far ahead.
“But third is an absolute necessity because anything below that is a disappointment with this squad. They probably should add a goalkeeper somewhere, so if they do that, it’s even better. But with a squad like this, the pressure is on (Frank) Lampard to finish third, and, for me, anything less would not be a success.