Two seasons ago Chelsea Football Club won the most prestigious trophy in all of Europe in dramatic fashion. Whether it was making up goal differential against Napoli, beating Barcelona or winning in penalty kicks against Bayern Munich, the Lions of Fulham provided entertainment through an excellent display of technical ability and speed throughout the Champions League. However the stress marks had already started to appear at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea finished 6th that year domestically behind London rivals Tottenham Hottspur and Arsenal, as well as northeastern favorites Newcastle United. In the 8 previous years Chelsea never finished lower then third and won the Premier League 3 times. The finish versus the Blues budget put Di Mateo, one of the revolving door managers of the west London club, on notice despite his European success. However, failure at home was nothing to do with Di Mateo, or Andres Villas Boas or Rafa Benitez but started much earlier.
When Jose Mourinho last won the title in 2006, Chelsea had a more physical make up then what is presently available to the chosen one. The speed of Sean Wright-Phillips combined with the physique of Arjen Robben, Didier Drogba and Michael Essien made for an extremely formidable side. Combine this with the ability of a natural goal scorer like Crespo (20 goals in 49 caps) and the presence of William Gallas and John Terry made the Blues early favorites to win the title. Many of the players that made up the side, such as Diarra, Duff, Sinclair, have gone on to great careers at other clubs. The talent level was apparent throughout the side. However, after the departure of the special one, things started to change. The jet streams started to shift… and England entered a phase of El Nino.
Fernando Torres came to Liverpool Football Club in 2007 and became one of the most prolific goals scorers off the continent. While in red, The Athletico Madrid transfer racked up 65 goals in just 102 appearances at the club, the first of which came at Anfeild to help the Reds draw 1-1 against Chelsea. Despite winning the league in 2010, Roman Abromavich still had a desire for the Spaniard, whose 28 million pound bid was rejected by Athleito just a few years earlier. Not to be spurned, the Russian Billionaire finally put in a 50+ million pound plus deal for the prolific striker and in 2011 the kid switched his colors from Liverpool Red to Stamford Blue. Since then Torres has struggled. While at Stamford Bridge, El Nino has only scored 15 times despite 87 caps.
Mourinho has now entered a completely different side then the one he left. In favor of Torres, Chelsea have abandoned a crowd favorite in Drogba simply because of the transfer fee payed for the Spaniard. It hasn’t been all bad. Torres has shown glimpses of his previous quality, such as his leg sealing goal against Barcelona or his Europa League Championship opener the following year. Some of his goals in Chelsea Blue have been sensational. However the consistency has been lacking, especially for a Mourinho front man.
It is hard to blame the struggle of entire club on one player, especially since he wasn’t whole responsible for his move to London. However, the club has seemed reluctant to pursue players who could fill the 9 spot ahead of a potent attacking midfield. The likes of Cavani, Falcao, Ibrahimovic and Villa have made moves without Chelsea making a dent in the proceedings. With all that in mind its hard to believe that the Chelsea staff will give up on the kid. Hopefully, the faith will not be misplaced and maybe some added playing time will help the former red gather form in Blue before Christmas.