Looking Back At How Chelsea’s Summer Signings Have Fared

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Updated: December 22, 2014

The summer transfer window of 2014 would surely be firmly etched in the minds of Chelsea fans for the years to come, because the club carried out immaculate business in that period, shipping out a few square pegs for exorbitant prices, which led to the arrival of players who have become integral to the set up since their arrival. If selling David Luiz to PSG for £50M was not the coup of the window, surely getting a proven, prolific goalscorer like Diego Costa for £32M would be. Chelsea also offloaded the unhappy Romelu Lukaku to Everton, but not before making the Toffees break their club transfer record. With that money, and some spare change, Chelsea brought in Cesc Fabregas, the man who has been the standout player since arriving at the club.

CFC Transfers

Image Courtesy: TransferLeague.co.uk

While the club did take some chances with the transfers, so far, it looks that the chances have paid off pretty well. With that in mind, we at Chelsea Index would like to reflect upon the impact that the new arrivals have had in our style, laden with numbers.

 

Didier Drogba:

 

The King returned home, and what a homecoming it has been so far. Scoring some crucial goals like the header at Old Trafford that was so reminiscent of the header past Manuel Neuer in Munich in 2012, Drogba has settled into the role of Diego Costa’s backup with ease. He has had an impact whenever he has been brought on, which is rather surprising considering that all felt that he had nothing to offer on the pitch. He has been a useful plan B when Costa has looked marked out, with his aerial prowess still intact. His goalscoring touch too hasn’t been lost, with a goalscoring rate near that of Costa’s.

The important thing is he is here and will finish his career with Chelsea. It looks, for me, that he’s going to stay doing other things when he finishes his career.

Mourinho on Drogba

Rating: 8/10

 

Diego Costa:

 

One of Europe’s most prolific strikers, Costa made the move from Atletico Madrid for a paltry fee, in comparison to the prices other strikers are going for. He has fitted Chelsea’s style of play and intent like a sock on a foot. When Chelsea play with brute, he has been the battering ram. When Chelsea play with speed, he has been their Barry Allen. A gladiator, Costa has been putting the ball into the net at a very good rate. While he has been out injured for a few games, his hunger is still intact, and he will play a crucial part in the title race. A worrying fact though is that he has looked off the boil in a few games, but he has more than made up for it by his displays when he turns up.

During last season, in the January market everybody spoke about us buying a striker and trying to attack the title in the second part of the season. In that moment we didn’t make a move because our first target was Diego Costa. So if you ask me was Diego a target in May or in June, no – Diego was a target that we started smelling very, very early.

Mourinho on Costa

Rating: 9/10

 

Kurt Zouma:

Zouma

 

The young defender was signed from St Etienne in the winter window of the 2013/14 season, but only arrived this season after a short loan spell. Lauded by many as the next Desailly, he has impressed all in his few cameo appearances. As his PL minutes are too small a sample size, we have taken in account his Champions League numbers. Calm on the ball and a beast aerially, Zouma looks like he is set to play a bigger role in the second half of the season, with their being several question marks over Gary Cahill’s suitability to fit the system Chelsea currently employ.

Mourinho told me, ‘Varane, I made him start straight away against Manchester City (in the Champions League 2012). You have to be ready at any time’

Zouma on Mourinho

Rating: 7.5/10

 

Loic Remy:

 

Signed as a last ditch Torres replacement, he has done nothing to remind us of ol’ Goldilocks. That, of course, is a compliment to the Frenchman, who hasn’t looked out of place when playing as Costa’s partner or his replacement. He offers something different to the other strikers on Chelsea’s books, with his blistering pace an asset on the counter. He has also played out wide when it has been needed of him. He has a really keen eye for goal, and his ability to find the net at a splendid rate will come in handy in the days when the fixture list gets overly crowded in the coming weeks.

Remy was one of the players we had in our objectives. He was one of the players we were ready to try to get if a space opened. The club was ready to give us a striker we like and one perfect to be one of our three. Remy is fast, attacks spaces and can play from the sides.

Mourinho on Remy

Rating: 7/10

 

Filipe Luis:

 

The Brazilian hasn’t been on the pitch as much as he would have expected, thanks to the ever-excellent Cesar Azpilicueta, but he has looked every bit the world class left back when he is on the pitch. He offers Chelsea natural width on the left, with Hazard drifting infield too often. He also can play higher up the pitch when Chelsea intend to shut the flank down. His crossing is pinpoint, with surgical precision and that is a crucial outlet when Chelsea play with Drogba up top. That is precisely the reason that most of his starts have been coincident with those of Drogba’s. His freekick the other day was sumptuous as well, and as time goes on, Chelsea might revert to natural sided full backs, giving Luis the long crack he so deserves.

I don’t think about it too much. I am ready to help the team whenever they need me but I know that currently I have Azpilicueta ahead of me. He is a great defender. He can play both on the left side and on the right and I cannot say anything about that. I can only work and wait for my opportunity to help my team.

Luis on Azpilicueta

Rating: 7/10

 

Cesc Fabregas:

It is difficult to overstate the impact that he has had in the team. In tandem with Nemanja Matic, he is a part of the Premier League’s most balanced and arguably the best midfield. His through passes to Costa have been a joy to witness, and so are the intricate passing triangles that he forms with Hazard, Oscar and Matic. He likes to dictate play and Chelsea play best when he is at his best. Against Hull, when he was out suspended, Chelsea’s tempo stuttered a bit. He has been crucial in getting the best out of his teammates. He is involved in a constantly dynamic partnership with Oscar and the duo have unsettled the best of defensive midfielders and hopefully will keep doing so. I was almost tempted to give Fabregas a perfect 10, but then I remembered the Old Trafford where Fellaini reduced him to the role of a mere spectator. But then came to mind the anguish faced by Arsenal fans at seeing their former captain lead their rivals to glory, so I had to give in to my earlier temptation.

We spoke about football. We spoke about the Chelsea project. We spoke about the way I want him to play, the way I want to transform my team, the Chelsea philosophy as a club. Not specifically, because it is not my job, but in general terms we spoke about what we would be able to pay to Barcelona, what we would be able to pay to him. Not to be decided there because, again, it is not my part of the job but just to give him an idea. And after that he said: ‘Yes, I want to go, no doubt’.

Mourinho on Fabregas

Rating: 10/10

fabregas-loves-chelsea

 

So that’s it on the summer signings. Here’s hoping the club can pull off a couple of coups of the winter window as well to give us something more to feel better about. If it is at the cost of further Arsenal (Reus) or Manchester United (Pogba/Hummels) anguish, then even better. January is coming!

Author’s Note: All the statistics used in this article are sourced from Squawka.com

3 Comments

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      December 27, 2014 at 8:46 PM

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