Having spent over £220million in the summer on a large influx of signings, many were tipping Frank Lampard’s new look Chelsea side to mount a serious challenge for the Premier League crown this season.
After finishing in the top four last season, it seemed that Chelsea were already in a good position to challenge at the top once again, and the seven additions added in the summer struck fear into the hearts of rival supporters.
The vast majority of whom conceded that the Blues had come out on top in the transfer window and looked all set to pose a serious threat in the upcoming months.
However, after seventeen matches played in the league this season, the Blues lie in 8th position with 26 points, only three more than Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal, who have come under a lot of scrutiny over the past few months.
Whilst there has been plenty of bright sparks from each of the signings so far, there still appears to be something missing from this Chelsea side. Although, as we enter the January transfer window, it looks doubtful that owner Roman Abramovich will want to dip into his pockets once again.
So how well have each of the new players performed?
Kai Havertz – £71m (D)
Chelsea’s most expensive signing of the window was the highly sought after Kai Havertz. After impressing in both the Bundesliga and Europa League for Bayer Leverkusen, the Londoners paid a huge amount to secure the German services.
So far however, the youngster has failed to show any real consistency. With only 1 goal and 2 assists in his fifteen Premier League appearances, he hasn’t exactly got off to a stellar start in England.
Furthermore, in recent times he has been dropped from the first eleven and hasn’t started in any of the Blue’s last four games. Frank Lampard has called for fans to be patient with Havertz development, however, and at the ripe age of 21, he certainly has time on his side.
He’s also showed glimpses of his quality in the EFL Cup, having bagged a hat-trick against Championship side Barnsley back in September. So whilst we might not see the best of Havertz potential until next season, there is certainly still reason for optimism with this signing.
Timo Werner – £48m (C)
After months of speculation of linking him to Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool side, it came to much surprise when all of a sudden the RB Leipzig frontman was signing the dotted line down at Stamford Bridge.
Gifted with lightning pace, Werner has certainly shown some early signs of becoming a top goal-scoring striker in England, but with a number of wasted opportunities to his name, the jury remains out on the 24-year-old.
The German forward got off to a modest start in the capital, bagging 4 goals and 2 assists in his first 8 Premier League appearances, as well as notching 3 goals in 3 games halfway into the Champions League group stage.
The goals have since dried up, however, and twelve games since his last strike suggests that Werner might join the list of forward flops at Stamford Bridge, alongside the likes of Alvaro Morata, Andriy Shevchenko and Fernando Torres.
Whilst his luck may be out at the moment, Chelsea still have a quality player on their hands, and once Werner regains his confidence, the goals will soon flow again. Blues supporters will just be hoping that it’s a case of sooner rather than later.
Ben Chilwell – £45m (B)
After arriving from high-flying Leicester City in the summer, Chilwell was brought in with the hope of cementing that left-back spot at the Bridge. The 24-year-old has performed very well in attack, grabbing two goals and five assists after his first twenty appearances for his new team.
Whilst there has been positives going forward from the Englishman, his defending has came into question on numerous occasions already this campaign.
Despite this, however, it appears that Chelsea do have a capable left-back at their disposal, who they can rely on for years to come.
Hakim Ziyech – £36m (B-)
Joining from Dutch heavyweight Ajax, Ziyech was brought in as an upgrade on the departing Willian who joined rivals Arsenal on a free transfer.
Having missed out on the first few weeks of the season with a knee injury, Ziyech came in and showed his quality with a goal and assist in his first league start for the club, away to Burnley. Another two assists followed in the next game against Sheffield United, as fans started to become more and more excited about the 27-year-old.
However, similar to Werner, Ziyech’s performances of late have also been brought into question, despite another injury lay-off which kept him out of contention for another few weeks.
The Moroccan’s flair and creative ability is clear for all to see, but many pundits in the media have been frustrated with the workload from the midfielder, with Graeme Souness stating that Ziyech “doesn’t look bothered” about tracking back and helping the team.
Edouard Mendy – £22m (C)
Following Kepa Arrizabalaga’s disastrous spell at the backend of the 2019/20 season, a new keeper in between the sticks was a must for Frank Lampard.
Stade Rennais goalkeeper Edouard Mendy was brought in for just over £20million, after guiding the French outfit to Champions League football the season beforehand.
The Senegalese international looked like an inspired signing early into his Chelsea career after conceding only once in his first six league appearances. However, his form has also tailed off in recent weeks, and the shot stopper has failed to keep a clean sheet in any of his last eight Premier League appearances.
These performances of late has raised the question as to whether or not Mendy is good enough to prolong his spot as number one in the coming years, and if this downward spiral continues, it may not be long before Lampard enters the market for a keeper yet again.
Thiago Silva – Free Transfer (C+)
Beaten Champions League finalist Thiago Silva was another star name that moved across to London in the summer, however, this time Roman Abramovich didn’t have to offer up millions.
Silva joined from PSG with the reputation of one of the leading centre-backs in world football, and even at the age of 36, supporters were hoping that the Brazilian still had a lot to offer.
However, the commanding defender got off to a horror start in a 3-3 draw at the Hawthorns, making a costly error which allowed West Brom to take a two goal lead in the September match.
Following on from that error, many argued that Chelsea’s number 6 would not be able to cope with the intensity of the league, but to be fair to Silva he has come on leaps and bounds since that day in the midlands.
Wearing the captain’s armband in the absence of Cesar Azpilicueta for much of the season, Silva has kept eight clean sheets as well as getting on the scoresheet twice for his new club.
Malang Sarr – Free Transfer (N/A)
Chelsea’s other free transfer was centre-back Malang Sarr, who arrived from OGC Nice in France. At the age of 21, Lampard certainly had the future in mind when making this signing, allowing the Frenchman to make a loan switch to Portuguese giants FC Porto.
Sarr has appeared in both the domestic league and Champions League for Porto, but since he made the loan switch after just a few weeks in London, it would be unfair to grade the youngster on his time at the Blues.