Chelsea have kicked off their not so majestic title defence to their thrilling title win last time around with three defeats and a goalless draw in eight games. The Blues look wary and out of ideas and are being outplayed by teams ranging in calibre from Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City to rock-bottom club Crystal Palace.
The summer came for the Blues with manager Antonio Conte being promised new signings to add strength and depth to his shallow squad. The summer went by and although Chelsea did end up with new players, almost none of them were Conte’s first choice signings. A team that had won the title last year now looks pale and desperately short in quality outside the first playing eleven.
Chelsea’s cause have suffered even more from the unfortunate injuries and silly suspensions for their first team stars with Alvaro Morata, Eden Hazard, N’Golo Kante, Victor Moses, David Luiz and Gary Cahill all missing games at crucial junctions.
Conte will need new players and the board has identified the signing of a left-back as one of the positions that needs to be filled urgently. Currently, the position is occupied by Marcos Alonso alone with Kenedy also able to play as a makeshift wingback. However, the Brazilian’s game is still average and wayward and he is far from regularly featuring for the Blues in the league.
One target being chased by the Blues board is Ryan Bertrand. The 28-year old who currently plays for Southampton is a former Blues player. The English international had a frustrating career at Chelsea and was never able to break into the first team on a regular basis.
He opted to move to Southampton to get more game time under his belt and he has done exactly that with the Saints. A series of good performances has earned him interest from Manchester City as a cover for the injured Benjamin Mendy and from his former employers Chelsea.
The full-back now will have a decision to make regarding Chelsea should they submit a formal bid. Although he was not a regular the first time around, things might be different now. He is an established player now unlike the youth product he was last time. Moreover, the manager has a formation which makes him a necessity in the squad and his ability to join in the attack will make him a valuable addition.
Finally, there is the old touch of sentiment, where he would be returning to the club he not only grew up with but went on to win several trophies with, including starting a match for them on their biggest night in Munich back in 2012.