Ever since Jose Mourinho’s heavenly time at Stamford Bridge came to an end, Chelsea have been living in the shadows of that great period in time for the club.
Avram Grant played using Mourinho’s same system before eventually getting the axe while Luiz Felipe Scolari could not really bring a “Brazilian touch” to Chelsea’s football style. And, although he enjoyed a superb stint, Guus Hiddink was just a temporary solution before Carlo Ancelotti is hired.
Ancelotti brings with him a wealth of experience from Italy; the former Milan, Juventus, Parma and Reggiana manager has two Champions League titles as well as a Serie A title and a Coppa Italia in his trophy cupboard.
You get a feeling that Chelsea are the early favorites, and what gives them the edge over the other teams is more than just the arrival of a world-class manager like Ancelotti.
Chelsea have further strengthened their team, reinforcing their already-powerful squad with Yuri Zhirkov, Ross Turnbull and Daniel Sturridge.
On the other hand, Liverpool and Manchester United were both dealt with great blows as Xabi Alonso and Cristiano Ronaldo departed from their respective clubs for Real Madrid.
Meanwhile Arsenal also had to let Kolo Toure and Emmanuel Adebayor head to The City of Manchester.
So Chelsea are, in fact, the only team out of the top four that did not lose any of their top players.
No matter how much the managers try to convince the team’s supporters otherwise, Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United have been sufficiently weakened this summer.
While Chelsea have had the same powerful and experienced bulk in their team for years now. With some good buys and yet no major changes, the players are bound to gel quickly and start the season well under Ancelotti’s guidance.
Chelsea did play the diamond formation before under Mourinho but it was not successful. But this time around, the team may function in a better way since Deco’s creativity can be employed well behind Anelka and Drogba.
In the first two games of the season, Chelsea have already shown that they are a team that can fight back and claim victory. In the games that Chelsea played against Hull and Sunderland, The Blues came back from behind to claim 2-1 and 3-1 victories at their respective opponents.
What makes Chelsea such a lethal team are the many players they have in their squad who can change the team’s fortunes in the dying moments. Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard can give Chelsea a win even after the side plays a terrible match. That is what makes good teams great.
It is time for Chelsea to leave from under Mourinho’s shadows. Ancelotti can now be the man to finally give Chelsea a new identity and a unique character away from Mourinho’s version of Chelsea.
With Ancelotti at the helm, this season might spark a dose of hope for Chelsea to continue to grow as a club with European glory still on the club’s fan wish-list.
In my mind, Chelsea are ready to win their fourth domestic title in the club’s history courtesty of a consistent and experienced squad, a world-class manager and weakened rivals. It might be the perfect time for Chelsea to reclaim their place as English champions.