Graham: The Journey To Beat The Pot into Shape
It might not be his fault that the club began the season with a dark cloud hanging over its head after their previous owner was dragged into the whole debacle that had been boiling between Russia and Ukraine last year.
It might not also be his fault that he inherited a team greatly imbalanced and totally decimated by injuries. It might not be his fault that his boss's magnanimity was abused and and lavished on players who were either misfits or just levels below the required standard.
It might not have been his fault that the team began the season poorly and confidence levels were at the lowest by the time he took over the team. But you can't dispute the fact that he saw all the grey areas before into the deep of the club's mess.
Since taking over from Thomas Tuchel, the Englishman has wobbled and huffed and puffed. Quality performances has been sparse and far in-between, with there being no cohesion on the pitch, the players looking like they need to borrow a leaf from the relationship between their owner and the manager, and learn how to support each other.
Looking at the transfer headlines gives a very optimistic outlook about the business done by the club as they have gone on a spending spree, acquiring the services of mostly budding prospects that might be worth the money in the long run.
But then a careful and reasonable look at the team and the available players leaves questions to be answered if they actually have a formidable team capable of challenging the big wigs for the best trophies with respect to the over 500m pounds spent.
First and foremost, they are still without a recognizable worldclass striker, capable of terrorizing defenders and delivering 25+ goals per season. Aubameyang is way beyond his prime and is in the twilight of his career.
Broja might possess some very viable traits that if developed could make him a fearsome attacker. But he's still a prospect at best and is not the kind of striker that will guarantee you a goal every two matches.
Joao Felix is a fantastic footballer with world class abilities who might be able to fill in the gap. But first off, he's not an out and out striker, secondly he got off to a terrible start by getting sent off in his first game which has robbed him of precious adaptation time and finally, he is on loan without a possibility of permanent transfer which means he might not be fully committed to the project, knowing fully well that he won't be part of it in the long run.
Kai Havertz so far has been the most consistently used player in the position and everyone has seen the limitations of his sluggish style of play and lack of physicality, and how it limits the whole team.
Christopher Nkunku now looks like the shoe in to fill that troublesome forward position come next season as I don't think Fofana has the requisite quality and maturity to perform for a dysfunctional team like Chelsea at this point in time. But then, what's the guarantee that Potter will still be there by the time he arrives?
Then there's the overcrowded midfield that is filled with names that sounds like quality, but look lost and constantly below par on the pitch of play. Take Ngolo Kante out and maybe Mateo Kovacic and that you're left with the Zakarias, Chukwuemekas, Loftus-Cheeks, Mason Mounts, and Conor Gallaghers of this world, competing against the likes of Bruno Fernandes, Thomas Partey, Casemiro, Martin Odegaard, Kevin De Bruyne etc.
Mere looking at the contrast in quality on that list, we already know what the outcome will be.
Same thing applies to the defence as the absence of Reece James through injury has opened up a massive hole in the team that the club surprisingly refused to address. Now imagine if Thiago Silva also got injured and what would happen to the team especially with no competent no6 offering quality protection to the defence.
It's no news that Chelsea have done a lot of business since the emergence of Boehly as the new owner, but much of the business looks like kneejerk, reactionary signings done out of desperation to soothe the immediate pains of the fans and make the owner look attentive and competent, instead of a laid down route and planned system that is centred on achieving both short and long term goals.
Graham Potter might be the owner's boy and has had his backing for the past few months, but the ball is fully in his court now to prove his mettle, especially with the fact that the owner has painted a picture of support both financially and otherwise. But that still hasn't changed the unbalanced nature of the team.
But then he is still left with a team that looks lightweight in defence, lacks the needed spark and creativity in midfield and looks blunt and shy of goals in attack.
For his own sake and the sake of the fans, I hope he can perform miracles and get consistent performances out of this team while hoping the gods of injuries smiles on him. Personally, I don't envy his position.
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"Beat the Pot into shape". Hehe, I love that title.
It's an interesting journey they are in now. What a mammoth project,with exquisite players! Obviously their style is to keep spending till they get all they want,not minding those who would be shipped out.
It remains to be seen how it all works out.
And that strategy seldom works or it might take ages before it works (just look at Manchester United)
It works if you buy correctly and retain your coach, please look at Man City.
Even if we say mistakes can happen to anybody, if Man City have made mistakes, it's easier to correct it when you retain the coach.
I like that Boehly has said, proper preparation for the next phase will begin this summer. I told this to some Chelsea fans who were shouting and expecting instant results. They argued initially, but when they noticed that I was indeed quoting Mr. Boehly, they all kept quiet.
Like Pep usually says, Managers should be given time. United kept changing them.
Again I await and see, Chelsea folks must now learn from Arsenal fans, what patience is about.
On Naija, I feel you brother. Guys in other nations, may not appreciate how difficult things are here now– even to get funds like you said.
All the best in your thesis. I wish I even had to send to you, I would have done that instantly. Please o, I need direction urgently on how to move out funds here instantly. You have a WhatsApp number or something, so I get very clear directives. PLEASE IT'S URGENT.
08025505870 thats my whatsapp number
You too much brother.
We use same network too.
I'll revert asap.
Potter is a decent coach and should have stayed at Brighton as Chelsea are amess at the moment and anyone would struggle to make this team successful. Just curious why are you powering down so much as you aren't growing your HP at all.
I guess last night's match is a big indication of how far they still are from getting to their promise land.
For the power down, its because I'm having issues with my phone screen plus I need funds for my final school thesis. Being a Nigerian at this point, its not easy getting funds through the traditional institutions.