Premier League: Lampard’s Chelsea and the 247 million euros spent on struggling signings

Premier League Atletico’s Champions League opponents

Lampard's Chelsea and the 247 million euros spent on struggling signings

The blue skies over west London have darkened over the last month. At the beginning of December, Chelsea looked like they could battle with Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur for the Premier League title.

A 1-0 loss at Everton on December 12 ended their 17-game unbeaten run across all competitions and, since then, they’ve entered something of a crisis.

“It’s been our toughest run of the season,” coach Frank Lampard said after Sunday’s loss against Manchester City. “I can feel the players’ disappointment, all they want is to win.

“A month ago there was talk we could win the league, but I knew there would be difficult periods.”

Since that loss at Goodison Park, Chelsea have lost to Wolves, Arsenal and Manchester City, while they’ve drawn with Aston Villa and beaten only West Ham, collecting four of the last 18 points on offer. In that time, only Sheffield United (six) and West Brom (five) have more than Chelsea’s four defeats.

Their defence looked strong but has now collapsed, and the goals their forwards were grabbing have now dried up.

Chelsea spent 247 million euros in the summer, more than anyone in Europe. Kai Havertz (80 million euros), Timo Werner (53 million euros), Ben Chilwell (50 million euros), Hakim Ziyech (40 million euros), Edouard Mendy (24 million euros) and Thiago Silva all joined.

Havertz hasn’t hit top form since battling COVID-19, while Werner is now 12 games without a goal, which is his worst run since his Stuttgart days in 2014/15.

Until now, Chelsea haven’t managed to beat any of the other ‘Big Six’ sides, drawing with Manchester United and Spurs and losing to Liverpool, Arsenal and Man City.

Atletico Madrid will be rubbing their hands together based on Chelsea’s current form.

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