Last season’s position: 3rd
Difference between Chelsea and the champions last season: 14 points
Prediction for the 2013-14 season: 1st
Chelsea’s important transfers in 2013:
[tabs type=”horizontal”][tabs_head][tab_title]Players In[/tab_title][tab_title]Players Out[/tab_title][tab_title]Players returning from loan spells[/tab_title][/tabs_head][tab]Andre Schurrle (£18 million from Bayern Leverkusen), Marco van Ginkel (£8 million from Vitesse Arnhem), Mark Schwarzer (free)[/tab][tab]Jeffrey Bruma (£2.5 million to Hamburg), Florent Malouda (free to Trabzonspor), Ross Turnbull (free to Doncaster United), Yossi Benayoun (released), Paulo Ferreira (retired), Oriol Romeu (loan to Valencia), Marko Marin (loan to Sevilla)[/tab][tab]Michael Essien (Real Madrid), Romelu Lukaku (West Brom), Kevin De Bruyne (Werder Bremen)[/tab][/tabs]
The new Premier League 2013-14 season kicks off in a few days, and there are plenty of expectations surrounding Chelsea. The return of the ‘Special One’ has made Chelsea as one of the favourites for the title. It has been four years since Chelsea last won the league title and it is about time. Of course, Chelsea have been enormously successful during this period, but winning the league is the bread-and-butter.
Mourinho has an incredible record when it comes to winning the league titles. In the last 11 seasons, he has won the league seven times in four different countries.
The conditions are pretty much similar to what he had when he first came in 2004. The squad back then had a good mixture of youth and experience, and it is a similar case at present. There is the youthful energy provided by the likes of Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku, while there are also experienced heads like Frank Lampard and John Terry.
Chelsea’s squad is probably one of the strongest in the league alongside Manchester City.
Goals from the three strikers – Fernando Torres, Romelu Lukaku, and Demba Ba – could be the deciding factor in the title race. Torres scored just eight league goals last season, while Lukaku is still very young and raw. It is not surprising that Chelsea are linked with Wayne Rooney. Torres, though, has been looking a little sharper than before in pre-season.
The midfield has been performing exceptionally in the last two years. Juan Mata in particular has been brilliant, but a series of injury problems during pre-season casts a doubt over his season. Last year, there was a heavy reliance on MAZACAR (Mata, Hazard, and Oscar). Now, the additions of Andre Schurrle, Kevin De Bruyne, and Marco van Ginkel provide substantial backup and strength.
Despite his age, Frank Lampard still remains a pillar of strength to Chelsea’s midfield.
This is an area where Chelsea have not made any additions so far, and the club will probably enter into the market depending upon the David Luiz outcome. The Brazilian continues to be linked with Barcelona. If he leaves, it is unlikely that Mourinho will trust youngster Nathan Ake over the full course of a Premier League season.
None of the central defenders have been convincing and that includes John Terry as well. During the days of Ricardo Carvalho and Terry (at his peak), we were rock solid. It is time to get back to those levels if we are to win the League.
Petr Cech has been a rock, and new signing Mark Schwarzer provides a decent backup for him. Hilario has also been given a new contract after being released last season.
Manchester United may be without Sir Alex Ferguson, but they still remain as one of the main challengers for the title. City have an extremely good squad, but they also have a new manager who has no Premier League experience. The threat from Arsenal, Tottenham, and Liverpool should not be ruled out, but they do not seem to have the squad strength or the consistency to win the league.
Where do you think Chelsea will finish?