How many at Chelsea are capable of mounting title challenge?

The inquest following Chelsea’s 3-0 dismantling at the hands of Arsenal at the weekend continues, with the Telegraph suggesting the Blues’ squad could be overhauled if the underperforming stars fail to prove their worth.

Matt Law reports that Roman Abramovich will sanction a facelift of the Stamford Bridge side should the current crop fail to convince Antonio Conte they are capable of competing for major silverware.

Only four new faces were added to the team that made a dreadful defence of their Premier League crown last season to finish in 10th place, while no first-team regulars were axed.

That business appeared to indicate that Conte would hand the bulk of last term’s flops the chance at redemption but, after four games without a win in all competitions, his patience appears to be wearing thin.

Should a fire sale be sanctioned from above, then it becomes tough to name too many Blues stars that could feel completely safe over their futures.

Diego Costa, who has been Chelsea’s best player so far with five goals in seven appearances, and the X-Factor provided by Eden Hazard would surely be retained, while John Terry’s importance grows stronger with every game he misses.

Cesar Azpilicueta rarely puts a foot wrong despite being played out of position at left-back and Thibaut Courtois is a capable shot stopper, but beyond that it feels like Chelsea wouldn’t particularly miss any of the old guard.

Law’s Telegraph story suggests Conte wants another full-back, a central defender, a midfielder and a forward to complete his squad, leaving the likes of Branislav Ivanovic, Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas at risk of the chop.

The west Londoners will bid to get back to winning ways against Hull next time out, where we make them 10/21 to triumph at the KCOM Stadium.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing


Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.