Antonio Conte’s new adventure at the Stamford Bridge got off to a bright start as he saw his team win 4 out of 4 games in all competitions since his move to England. The manager has made a number of new signings including the likes of Marcus Alonso, David Luiz, N’Golo Kanté and Michy Batshuayi, all of who will serve a purpose at the club in the season to come. The manager was never backing away from spending big and has surely improved on his squad from the previous season but has he done enough to lift Chelsea back to glory a year after falling to the 10th place? Here are 3 questions the Blues are asking after the end of the transfer window.
Why go back for David Luiz?
When Chelsea sold the Brazilian for an astounding price of £50m a couple of years ago to PSG, it was termed as a genius transfer as Luiz was slowly fading away. He was superb alongside his national team-mate Thiago Silva at the back for the French outfit but he never looked like the strong, potent defender that Antonio Conte trusts his defense with.
He is prone to too many mistakes that makes the Blues vulnerable, and paying £30m for him is nothing more than a panic buy. They moved from Koulibaly and Bonucci to Luiz which shows the lack of negotiation skills within the club and if they are not able to hang on to games in crunch time this season, the lack of a defensive leader will be the first thing circled out by the critics.
Three-year loan? Why not sell?
Juan Cuadrado, a January transfer that has hardly made an impact at the club was sent back to Juventus on a three-year loan deal. Yes, three years on loan at a time where a permanent transfer does not see players stay at a club for three years. This was a bizarre deal right on the deadline day as the Colombian international was deemed surplus to requirements at the Bridge.
Without European football, Chelsea may not need too much of depth in the squad but sending a player out on loan for such a long time especially a 28-year old, makes no sense. Cuadrado may be a hit at Turin in his second spell at the club but Chelsea have not given him enough chances to decide and banish him for three years.
4-2-3-1 or 3-5-2? What will Conte use at Chelsea?
The former Italian boss is a constant advocate of the 3 at the back system that gives his side an extra number in the midfield. But he has been using a 4-man defense at Chelsea in the new season and a part of it was due to the lack of options at the back.
The manager has now purchased a new full-back, capable of playing as a wing-back, and also a defender and may be looking to go back to 3 at the back after the international break. Though David Luiz may not be good enough to walk into the first team, Conte can now use Marcus Alonso and Cesar Azpilicueta as wing-backs with Branislav Ivanovic, John Terry and Gary Cahill playing in a three man defense. The success the team got win a 4-2-3-1 formation may see Conte stick to it but his teams are at their best in a 3-5-2 system so it will be interesting to see what the manager uses come the start of the season after the break.