The re-signing of Nemanja Matic might have been a costly exercise but if Chelsea are successful over the next couple of years then it won’t be money wasted.
Jose Mourinho is known for creating big powerful sides and this guy fits the mould perfectly. With the likes of Essien and Mikel way past their best it was time for Chelsea to reinvigorate their engine room. They like to play a 4-2-3-1 but needed some more man-mountain for the ‘2’. There is still talk that Freddy Guarin could also be added, but we think that Chelsea got their top target in Matic, and may now look at other areas of the team.
They need to address the left back berth rather urgently and news this week suggests that Southampton may let Luke Shaw go sooner than expected. The player was expected to stay on the south coast at least until the summer but disruption at the club means he could leave in January, according to reports.
The bookies have Chelsea as favourites to land the player, ahead of Manchester United. And, in these head to head transfer situations Chelsea regularly come out on top, due to the exceedingly deep pockets of Roman Abramovich. With Ashley Cole struggling to get in the starting XI, Chelsea are in a position to offer the player a starting place in the team, which will dissolve any advantage that Manchester United thought they may have had in transfer negotiations.
The other major area for improvement is in the striking section. All manner of names have been doing the rounds in relation to Chelsea but they may well decide to wait until the summer with Samuel Eto’o, Demba Ba and Fernando Torres sufficing for now.
So here is what we think could be Chelsea’s strongest XI come February.
CHELSEA (4-2-3-1) – Cech, Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Shaw, Ramires, Matic, Hazard, Oscar, Willian, Torres
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