Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Premiership Picks: Winners

Winners: Chelsea

I really like the look of Chelsea this season. For me, the season could be the best yet in the Premiership. Last season we saw Liverpool running Man Utd close for the title with Chelsea never really threatening in third.

This season, Chelsea could profit form the fact that Man Utd and Liverpool have both lost crucial 1st team players. Chelsea on the other hand have strengthened with the signing of Yuri Zhirkov. Zhirkov will have a great effect on the team if given the opportunity. I do rate him very highly as I think Russian players are well suited to play in the Premier League and he does possess great qualities as a player.

Joe Cole returning to the team could be like a new signing too after missing most of last season. The real coup for Chelsea is no doubt the appointment of Carlo Anchelotti at the Bridge.

If given full reign to the 1st team selection and signing of players, he will prosper at Chelsea with Roman Abramovic providing the ammunition financially. A manager that is often highly respected by his players, Anchelotti have a real winning mentality and that fits in well with the team ethic and never-say-die attitude the team already possesses.

Chelsea’s biggest strength will be their togetherness and camaraderie they have as a unit. We have seen Chelsea doing so well even in times of uncertainty, like the previous 2 seasons when they had managerial changes.

Chelsea’s spine will no doubt be Terry, Lampard, Essien and Drogba again. You just feel they might jave been closer to Man Utd last season had Essien been available the whole season. The effect that Essien has on the team is immense.

Chelsea played 4-4-2 in the Community Shield, however they will revert to Anchelotti’s favored 4-2-3-1 when the season starts. That in my opinion is the best fit for the Chelsea team. Drogba seems to play best when upfront alone.

The only blip I can see in Chelsea’s season could be the losing of crucial players for the African Nations Cup in January. They are primed to lose Essien, Mikel, Kalou and Drogba for a month and how they adapt to that will be crucial.

Another weakness could be Petr Cech. Most people may be surprising to read this but he really has not been great since his horrific injury he sustained at Reading a few seasons back. We are seeing constant errors from him and he does not command his area as well now that he seems to have a fear in him when coming for crosses. His performance in the Community Shield wasn’t great and I think he should have stopped both Man Utd goals. He is however still a top shot stopper.

The season ahead looks to be great to the boys from the Bridge. If they do not end up as winners, I see them running the eventual winners really close.

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