Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea finished the 2014-15 season on a high after finishing as the champions of England and also won the League Cup title. There were disappointments too for Chelsea as they were knocked out of the Champions League round of 16 on away goals by PSG and also suffered a fourth round FA Cup exit at home by 2nd tire club Watford City.
Now in the first match of the English Domestic Season lost to Arsenal in Community Shield Final. Now what they need to do? Chelsea season Review at a glance and what they need to do now.
Chelsea Season Review 2014/15 : Rooms For Improvement
Chelsea’s Performance Last Season
Chelsea finished the league with 87 points, losing only 3 times and recording most days as Premier League leaders .They were on top for 274 days breaking the record of Manchester United’s 262.
Despite their dominance in England and great first half of the season they had ordinary second, as a result, they were eliminated from the earlier stage of the Champions League, unfamiliar for a Jose Mourinho side.
Transfer In and Out 2014/15
They started the season with a bang with new signings hitting in all cylinders and team’s backbone stayed resolute throughout the campaign.They signed Diego Costa from Atletico Madrid for 32m pounds and Cesc Fabregas from Barcelona for 27m pounds early in the summer which make the team settle down quickly. Thibout Courtois returned form Atletico after 3 years of loan spell and established himself as the no 1 shot-stopper at Stamford Bridge ahead of veteran Petr Cech.
Jose did a great business in the transfer window by selling David Luiz for 40 million pounds, Lukaku for 28 million pounds. And also got what Chelsea needed after the departure of Drogba. He got Costa cheap. Later sign Drogba on a one year loan.
Although he was criticized heavily for not renewing Lampards contract, but he got Cesc cheaply also. Both these new signings started the league on fire and help the team like running away with the league from the start.
In the winter transfer window Andre Schurrle left the club and Colombian Juan Cuadrado arrived for similar transfer fees.
John Terry played the most number of minutes despite of his age (36 years) and Nemanja Matic, at the heart of the midfield shielded his defense and dictated play. Well Eden Hazard remained hazard for the opposition defenses and ended the campaign as the most fouled player.
Fullbacks Ivanovic and Azpilicueta also impressed. Mention of Kurt Zouma is must as he guarded Chelsea’s backline when called upon in the wake of Cahill’s of form and he played in midfield also when the team needed, with ease. Another new thing was the influence of Willian in the midfield.
At the end of December Chelsea had 46 points with a goal difference of 27 having conceded only 13 times and with a solitary defeat to Newcastle.
The start of the new year as they lost 5-3 to Spurs, Jose’s biggest defeat at England. Chelsea’s form dropped and their game changed.Despite that the off form of Manchester City allow them to remain top.Arsenal had a strong second half of the season after a poor start and leapfrogged City in the second spot and pushed Chelsea a little.Midway through the second half of the season as they were knocked out from both the FA Cup and UCL early at home.
Despite the decay in form Chelsea ended the season with domestic double.In the league they finished with 87 points (26 wins,9 draws, 3 defeats,+41 GD ).
Key Talking Points:
1) After quite some time Chelsea found a compact and complete team under Jose Mourinho. Despite several injuries and suspensions to the likes of Costa, Matic, Oscar in crucial phases of the season they held on and finished the campaign well ahead of the rest of the league.
2) Chelsea’s away record and games against title challengers was key to their success. They earned 10 points out of possible 18 against them and did not lose against big rivals thanks to Jose’s tactics they didn’t concede many away from home and the whole team should get credit for their defensive work. Once again defense won championship after the attack started with goals and wins.
3) Jose is securing Chelsea’s future with the likes of Zouma, Azpilicueta, Coutois; soon Ake will join them in that list as well. After so many seasons Chelsea got a complete stiker in Costa and Lamp’s replacement in Cesc.
But performance in UCL has surely made the boss angry, he is famous for his teams professional and tactical displays in the competition. He will once again want to challenge the big three for European glory which will lead him to history books. But that is not really an easy job to do and on the other hand, his domestic rivals be stronger next season. Costa had a torrid UCL in front of goal which may be costed his team early elimination in the tournament.
What Next For Chelsea?
So what next? Can they challenge the European elites where you have to play out of your skin?
Transfer In and Out So far
After the end of the season veterans Drogba and Cech was released and sold, then later to rivals Arsenal.
They got Radamel Falcao on loan which can be a good addition to the bench and routing. Falcao would be looking to get back into form after an injury and Van Gaal laden campaign.
After Cech’s departure, they have signed a brilliant replacement in Asmir Begovic. The Bosnian would be good enough to replace the veteran.
Possible Transfer In and Out
Chelsea is heavily linked with Everton defender John Stones and he could be a fantastic inclusion to this side, a long term replacement of John Terry.
Will Mikel stay this season? After arrival of Matic, he spent most of his time on the bench, as a result his performance degrade in last season. So there is a possibility he will leave this season. Now it will be up to Chelsea to find his replacement.
Juventus was interested in Juan Cuadrado. But he confirmed this week, he is going to stay and chooses the legendary 11 no. jersey.
Losing to Arsenal in the first competitive game is wake up call for the Chelsea side. They need to find the right combination before EPl starts. It’s a tough task to retain the EPL title. Apart from that it is expected that we will surely see a better Chelsea in Europe, Jose will want make competition more important this time around. Juve had challenged the big boys well and made it to the final, if Chelsea get their form and tactics right they can cause problems as well.
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This article has written by Asfaque Alam. Fan of Real Madrid and Germany. Passionate about the game and love to write article about football. If you have similar interest, you can drop an email at email@example.com to contribute.