Chelsea's Fifth Under Abramovich But Is It Their Best Team?
Following a disappointing 2015/16, and the appointment of Antonio Conte, they’ve looked unstoppable. But how do this season’s compare to the title winners of yesteryear?
It took Jose Mourinho just one season to get his hands on the Premier League title, thanks to a defence that was truly phenomenal. While Conte’s men have been more than assured at the back, you can’t really beat a side that didn’t concede in a record 1,025 minutes.
Carvalho and Terry were rock solid at the back, helping the defence keep 25 clean sheets and concede just 15 goals. Up top though it’s a different story, where this season Diego Costa and Eden Hazard have been brutal, Drogba – their leading striker – only bagged 10 goals.
Once again Chelsea built from the back, leading to consecutive titles for Mourinho and the Blues. Cracks were beginning to show, just as they were last season but it was still a solid campaign.
It was in defence where they shone, again you’d have to say a better effort than this season but among the midfield, it would only be Lampard who would get a game in the side today.
Chelsea’s third title came courtesy of Carlo Ancelotti, who transformed them from a solid, defensively minded outfit into a free-flowing counter-attacking side. It brought the best out of Didier Drogba, transforming him into a Chelsea legend and scoring 29 goals for the Blues.
That beats the 20 from Costa this season while Lampard’s tally of 22 also surpasses any of this season’s champions.
It was a fairytale return for Jose Mourinho who immediately brought success back to Stamford Bridge. He relied heavily on John Terry’s commanding leadership once more, helping keep 17 clean sheets. Ivanovic had a season that took him to the heights of one of the best in the world, while Cesc Fabregas added a real creative spark in midfield.
Fabregas knocked up 18 assists, with a brilliant Costa netting 20 in 26 games. It marked a return to the top for Chelsea and one which looked like they would remain there for a while. However, the wheels fell off the following season and Chelsea looked like the Bridge could do with a rebuild both on and off the pitch.
It wasn’t the best start to the season for Chelsea but it looks like Abramovich got it right in hiring Antonio Conte. The Italian has managed to combine an organised and solid back four with an attack which is truly devastating.
Terry’s role has been nominal this year but it hasn’t stopped them, shifting into a back three with David Luiz, Gary Cahill, and Cesar Azpilicueta becoming a real unit. That has been helped by the arrival of the tireless N’Golo Kante who has rightfully been praised throughout the season.
Not only has he managed to protect the back three, his break up play has been incredible, playing onto the likes of Eden Hazard who have been given much more freedom going forward.
Despite his theatrics on and off the field, Costa has been effective again, completing a side which undoubtedly combines the best qualities of all Chelsea’s title winning sides.