Chelsea’s tour of the US has been an eventful one so far. The team have played 2 matches & we have 2 more matches to play. While Chelsea recorded a convincing win against the Seattle Sounders, beating them 4-2, we could only manage a 1-1 draw against PSG.
2 pre-season matches is hardly enough to judge a team, but I’m going to attempt to do just that. Here’s a look at what we have learnt about Chelsea during our tour of the US:-
1) A vastly-improved attacking style of play– Probably the one thing I’ve been most happy to see. The addition of Eden Hazard & Marko Marin has given a whole new dimension to Chelsea’s attack. While Marin has incredible speed, a bagful of tricks & the ability to provide that final ball, Hazard has the ability to take on his men while dictating the pace of the game, along with a keen passing sense. Both have looked good so far, & one can only imagine how much better the attack will get with the addition of Mata & Torres. Just imagine… Marin, Mata & Hazard lining behind Torres. Exciting times, right?
2) A weakened defence– You probably think I’m being a bit harsh here, but hear me out. In both game so far, the defence has looked vulnerable. While it’s true that we were missing key players in our match against the Sounders, the levels of concentration were low. Even against PSG, there were a few moments when the defence looked very shaky indeed. Then again, pre-season is all about regaining match fitness & preparing for the new season ahead. Better to make such mistakes now then to make them in Champions League or Premier League matches.
3) A new striker would be nice- The departure of Didier Drogba left a massive hole in Chelsea’s strike-force. While I expect Fernando Torres to deliver for us next season, it will be silly to rely only on him. The team needs a quality back-up. Daniel Sturridge could do the job for us, but his future currently hangs in the balance. Romelu Lukaku would benefit from a season-long loan spell, as he is not ready to be a first-team regular just yet. He looked out of depth at times against PSG. Fulham are reportedly interested in signing Lukaku on loan. With Lukaku out, we only have Danny & El Nino (We’re still not sure about Danny). We could do with a new striker before the season begins.
These are the 3 things we have all taken away from the first 2 matches of pre-season. Next up, we play the MLS All-Stars in Philadelphia. Watch this space for more.
By Shayne Dias