The wheels are falling off for Chelsea

27 Dec

First of all, happy holidays everyone!  Hope all you readers have a marvelous festive time. Now, onto the post at hand…

Chelsea opened the season looking like a team that would just roll to the Premier League title for the second straight year. They scored 14 goals in their first three games and did not concede a goal til the fourth game of the year (3-1 win over West Ham). The Blues only lost once over the first two months of the season and sat on top of the table with eight wins, one loss and one draw.

Since the beginning of November, it has been a different story. Chelsea has only notched one win in its last eight Premier League games and hasn’t scored more than one goal in any contest. The squad’s last win came on November 10, a 1-0 win over Fulham.

In today’s loss to Arsenal, Chelsea was completely outclassed. The Gunners played a smart possession game, especially after going up by two goals. Even after the final goal by Arsenal, Chelsea never looked truly dangerous to make a game of it.

There’s been talk that the dismissal of assistant manager Ray Wilkins has been a major factor in Chelsea’s skid and I’m sure it has played a role, but the truth is that Chelsea is an aging squad. Six of the starters against Arsenal today were at least 30. Not that players that age can’t still compete at an extremely high level, but there is not a lot of youth within the Chelsea regulars. Mikel was the youngest starter at 23. Carlo Ancelotti might want to look into getting some of the squad’s young talent some playing time because what they have right now certainly isn’t working.

Chelsea lineup vs. Arsenal (age in parentheses)
Cech (28)
A. Cole (31)
Essien (28)
Lampard (32)
Drogba (32)
Mike (23)
Malouda (30)
Ferreira (31)
Kalou (25)
Terry (30)

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