This transfer window has yet again seen late transfer requests, loan deals and big money moves in the premier league. Kun Aguero to Man City for £38m, Mikel Arteta to Arsenal for £10m, and David De Gea to Man Utd for £20m. The final figure spent overall by teams in the Premier League was £460 million, a record high for the English league. Manchester City were yet again the highest spenders by splashing out over £80m on more world class talent. Chelsea surprisingly after there some-what subdued transfer policy over the past few years (excusing the Torres and David Luiz signings) were closely second by spending around the £70 million pound mark, however, not on big stars, but on younger talent.
Andre Villas Boas has done something that previous managers have failed to do, whilst signing quality talent like Juan Mata and Raul Meireles, he has gone out and signed stars for the future that can help rebuild Chelsea and their ageing squad. Villas Boas has scouted hard and well and has found who he believes to be future of the West London club, and who will eventually replace the likes of Frank Lampard, Michael Essien and Petr Cech. Below is a selection of the latest recruits at the bridge and what I believe they can bring to club.
Oriol Romeu – Centre Defensive Midfielder
He joined Chelsea from Barcelona as one of the first in a wave of new signings made by AVB, he cost around £4.8m and is a tall lean but strong defensive midfielder. It has been said he has a great range of passing ability, which is what the Barcelona youth set up is renowned for, and can also fill in at centre back, I believe given the chance, Romeu could eventually replace Michael Essien in the holding role, and could add something that Chelsea currently lack in build-up play.
Romelu Lukaku – Striker
Everyone knows that Lukaku is one of the brightest talents in Europe at the moment, and for Chelsea to snap him up for around £22m is a great coup. He is likened to Didier Drogba and could easily replace him within a few years. Lukaku looked sharp when coming on against Norwich, bullying defenders around with his great strength and was unlucky not to score. It seems he already has a grasp for the premier league’s pace but at the age of 18, still needs has plenty to learn.
Thibaut Courtois – Goalkeeper
Chelsea signed yet another young Belgian international in July, and the goalkeeper is showing he has great promise for the future. At the age of 19 he signed from Racing Genk in a deal worth around the £7m mark. He stands at a whopping 6 foot 6 inches, around the same build as Petr Cech. He is said to have great reflexes and has a calmness about his game that confirms his already mature way of playing that some keepers his age do not have. Chelsea have now loaned him out to Atlético Madrid to gain first team experience.
Juan Mata – Winger
Winning the world cup and being just a mere 23, Chelsea have made what appears to be a great signing in the young Spaniard for a cheap £23m. Mata was an important piece in Valencia’s puzzle and became an indispensable player at the Mestalla, but like his compatriots David Villa and David Silva, everyone has their price. Mata brings a fresh new style to the Bridge. He has pace and is a creative force, which hopefully will be able to get Torres scoring again. He can play on either wings or just behind the striker, and is the brightest signing Chelsea have made in this window. He looks like he could replace the ageing Florent Malouda on the left side.
These are just a selection of youngsters Chelsea bought but they are who I believe can make a real impact for the blues. Not forgetting we have also signed, Lucas Piazon the young Brazilian who is making waves at Sao Paolo, and also the signing of the winger Ulises Davila from Mexican side Chivas.
Not only have Chelsea made some great young signings they are also bringing through great potential, players like Patrick Van Aanholt, Jeffrey Bruma, Daniel Sturridge and of course Josh McEachran, who is tipped not only to be the future of Chelsea, but the future of England alongside Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere. AVB has been very clever in this latest window and has gone and found what he believes in a few years, could be the new spine of the West London club. I look forward to seeing it all unfold.
By Jack Griffiths