The Chelsea Challenge


Although Chelsea finds themselves way behind pace-setters, fans and punters favourite Manchester City, Thomas Tuchel’s men will not give up the fight. Today, we will look at how Chelsea can resurrect their assault on the Premier League and what it will take to do so. After a 2-1 win at Arsenal on New Year’s Day, Pep Guardiola’s squad moved 11 points clear of Chelsea and 12 points clear of Liverpool.

Liverpool will still have a game in hand, but stopping City from winning the Premier League for the fourth time in five seasons appears to be an uphill battle.

When the team is as packed as this, Thomas Tuchel has built a system that appears fluid independent of people, which is a great weapon. This season, Chelsea has started 24 different players in Premier League games.

They are young and have a lot of experience at the same time. Chelsea’s season will be complicated with their participation in the Club World Cup in February as the reigning European champions. The games against Brighton and Arsenal will likely be rescheduled, resulting in a glut of fixtures.

Will they be able to keep winning as Liverpool and Manchester City keep pressing? Chelsea’s squad contains fewer Premier League champions. If nerves are tested in the spring, a proper title race will be a fresh experience and a stern examination for others.

Rotation is critical to the club’s success in any given season, and this year has been no exception. Rotation allows them to prioritize particular games and provide needed respite to players without compromising their ability or performance on the field.

Although it may be evident that rotating your squad will provide fresh legs for important games, achieving this balance can be challenging. On the other hand, Chelsea is one of the few clubs capable of doing it consistently year after year.

A strong defense would be required to become English champions, and greater defensive performances will be needed than has been shown recently. When Thomas Tuchel looks back on the Leeds game, he’ll notice that no outfield player on his team completed more than 90% of their passes, that Marcelo Bielsa’s side outran them, and that they lacked inventiveness. In addition, the Blues have conceded four penalties, accounting for 36 percent of their goals against.

Furthermore, with the contracts of Rudiger, Andreas Christensen, Cesar Azpilicueta, and Thiago Silva all scheduled to expire after the season, the Blues are shooting themselves in the foot. With specific uncertainty around Rudiger and Christensen, the squad is at risk of losing key players who helped them win the Champions League for the second year in a row.

Notably, Denmark international Christensen’s recent performances have dipped. Christensen is known for being a calm and professional player. In the midst of tumultuous discussions, Tuchel has publicly chastised him and would prefer to prevent him from escaping.

In the meantime, Rudiger’s recent performances have piqued the curiosity of Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, and Paris Saint-Germain, with Real Madrid leading the race to sign him on a free transfer. 

Rudiger would prefer to stay, but he wants a wage comparable to his compatriots Timo Werner and Kai Havertz, who are among Chelsea’s top five earners. Even as their contracts expire, Rudiger and Christensen’s influence has grown this season.

One bright spot is that Chelsea has gotten more merciless in front of goals this season, with players like Mason Mount scoring at a higher rate and match-winners coming from all corners of this vast group.

However, while having 17 different goal scorers this season, the Blues lack a match-winner in the mold of Liverpool striker Mohamed Salah.

As a result, they will have to resurrect their defense to mount a championship run. That defense was founded on high-intensity football, a strong team spirit, and a tactical structure that made it impossible for counterattacks to succeed. If Chelsea can reclaim its vicious streak at the back, that will remain their winning formula.

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