A Contribution Post via Waleed Ibrahim.
Off the back of a historic Europa League win, Maurizio Sarri could be facing an even tougher challenge next season.
Assuming he stays in the job and Chelsea continue with not appealing for the ban, Chelsea will endure a season with no new names entering the squad. Although Mauricio Pochettino has proved that a squad can be built without buying players, the situation at Chelsea is much different.
Chelsea’s current squad holds 8 players who are at or above 30. Although some of those names may be leaving, it is vital that Chelsea prepare younger backups for them as soon as possible.
Although the transfer ban limits Chelsea from overseas players, it instead opens doors to Chelsea’s infamous youth army. Many names have been thrown in the ring for participating next season, such as Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham, Fikayo Timori and Reece James.
Other mentioned players also include Michy Batshuayi and Kurt Zouma. Although they are talented players in their own right, most believe that they do not have the quality to become regulars at Chelsea. I partially agree to this statement. In this moment, they are not players that can walk into the first team.
However, Chelsea fans must understand that this is understandable and okay. The transfer ban allows Sarri to work with a squad at less expectations. It allows him to nurture these youngsters as players that directly fit his system. This means that he can ask them to work hard for their spot in the team and create competition with other squad players.
If used properly, healthy competition will force players to be more expressive. It will encourage them to take more risks and increase their workrates, two things I feel we could improve on after assessing this season.
The imminent departure of Eden Hazard will also be a wake up call for the team. Not having a star player to rely on in attack means others must step up. This requirement along with healthy competition will bring out the best in players and give Sarri more to work with.
I expect him to be very experimental next season. He has now created a basic understanding of Sarriball in this squad and can now use pre season to capitalize on it.
Although many have criticised his repetitive tactics, its allowed players to completely understand the basic essence of his style and how imperative it is to keep sticking to it when down. This has created a resilience that will be vital next season.
The transfer ban also allows Chelsea to reassess themselves as a club. Given no big money is leaving the club, they can use this break to sort out better transfer strategies and plan on more effective ways to conduct themselves in transfer markets.
Shades of this have already been seen in how Chelsea are reportedly negotiating with Petr Cech for the position of Director of Football. It also provides Chelsea with a golden chance to bring back club legends like Frank Lampard and John Terry into coaching positions and use them to create more meaning in the club. Having such figures around you on a daily basis not only gives players a chance to learn from their experience but also develops a sense of responsibility for the club.
Chelsea desperately needs model players for youngsters to work with. They need people that can increase the motivation and bring more fight in the club. Although it does seem unlikely either mentioned names would take coaching jobs, their love for the club and thirst for experience might result in so.
The lack of outgoing money also allows Chelsea to revive their stadium plans. With only players being sold, it allows the club to plan ahead for the stadium with the right finances. Although this is not a pressing issue, I’m fairly certain it will be a topic of discussion during this summer.
Overall, the transfer ban definitely limits us to competing for trophies next season but it brings some extremely positive opportunities for the long term.
All it depends on is how the board use this chance. Personally, I believe their first step should be to give Sarri some job security. Let him know he is allowed to work his magic next season without the fear of being sacked. After that, the rest of the plans follow.
Written by @Waldinihoo