Hello Blues … Unless you have just returned from Kiribati or Tuvalu, you will be aware that Andres Villas-Boas is the new Chelsea manager. Given that, the media has a serious hard-on on our new manager; it’s likely you have been informed of his impressive managerial record at Porto.
Since Villas-Boas’ appointment, I have read several articles and tweets advising Chelsea to give Villas-Boas time to prove his worth. I found that a bit strange because our club has given most managers at least one season to prove their worth.
The managers that didn’t have a complete season at Chelsea are Scolari, Grant and Hiddink. Hiddink did well by bringing us the FA Cup; he was not sacked from Chelsea, the Russian had a contract with Russia that he had to honour, we were lucky to have him for that short time.
Scolari did not last more than seven months because the players had lost faith in his ability – The players questioned his training methods. Scolari didn’t want to play Drogba who had returned to full fitness, and argued that Anelka and Drogba couldn’t play together. He wanted to swap Drogba with Adriano, whose career had already taken a serious nosedive by that point.
He couldn’t change things tactically and we became predictable on the pitch, in the 25 games he was in charge we won 14, drew 7 and lost 4. The future looked bleak; the club had no choice but to sack him.
When Hiddink replaced Scolari, our season improved astronomically and we won the FA Cup, whereas Avram Grant was sacked by Chelsea because we came second in three competitions plus lost League Cup final to Spurs – In my opinion that alone should have gotten him sacked yet we still gave him the chance to chase after the Premier League and the Champions League.
We ended runners-up in the both competitions, Grants was poor as a tactician and motivator. He stuck to the Mourinho formation and even played Mourinho’s favoured starting 11. He couldn’t change things tactically and as a result, we became predictable under him – If you look what Grant did at Portsmouth and West Ham, you’ll be glad we did not offer him more time.
Last season, Ancelotti could have been sacked by December but because the players still had faith in him, he was given until the end of the season. We made a strong comeback from fifth position to second position in the league, had we won against Manchester and luck was on our side, we could have retained our Premier League trophy. Ancelotti failed to inspire to his men to achieve what would have been the greatest comeback to a league trophy.
If you think relegation specialist Grant who got us second in three competitions, you will understand why Ancelotti was sacked.
Be glad our club holds our managers to a high standard. Mourinho came in, he wasn’t given time, he bought his time by winning trophies. Guus brought a trophy, if he did not have a contract with Russia; he would have remained at the club longer. Then, Carlo got another season because he won trophies in his first season.
At Chelsea, it’s simple, you win a trophy or you move on …. That’s the reality and we mustn’t hide from it. Take a look at Arsenal, seven years no trophy yet one manager. It tells you more time is not necessarily a good thing.
Villas-Boas doesn’t have seasons to prove himself, he needs to bring at least one trophy to keep at his job for another season. He has worked under Mourinho and he understands the challenge – One that he has accepted and I hope he succeeds at it.
What Villas-Boas needs now is cash to buy some quality players. If we don’t do this, he is going to struggle to achieve his objectives. I don’t believe Chelsea needs much change, or that getting rid of some of our current players (especially when there is no replacement in sight). Our opponents are strengthening their squads; we will need all the depth we can get if we are going to win trophies next season.
The priority signings should be a right-winger and a creative midfielder. The former will provide balance for our attack, as it stands most of our attacks come from the left side of the pitch. Malouda created and scored our most goals in the league because the ball was always given to him. We had nobody on the right wing to receive the ball.
Towards the end of last season, Carlo played Ramires on the right wing to balance our attack but it yielded little result as the players were too used to crossing the ball to Malouda. Chelsea also needs at least one creative player, last season both Anelka and Malouda provided the creativity.
This coming season, if Benayoun remains fit, he will inject some creativity but if we add one more creative player, our midfield problems will be solved. It’s time to give Andre enough cash to help him achieve the vision he has for Chelsea.
Till next time, Up the Chels! By Morad