Chelsea host Everton at Stamford Bridge on Saturday with two consecutive league wins following only two wins in their previous 15 games. They have the Blues finally clicked? Is their recent run of form a sign that their remarkable squad turnover is now coming together, or are victories over relegation-threatened Leeds and Leicester too tiny a sample size to inspire hopes so early in their project?
Chelsea on a run following Leeds, Dortmund, and Leicester wins
Rumours circulated that Graham Potter’s time at Chelsea would be cut short if his team lost at home to Leeds at the start of the month. However, a narrow 1-0 home win was followed by wins against high-flying Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League. The first Premier League away win since mid-October at the King Power Stadium last Saturday.
Six of Chelsea’s starting XI at Leicester have joined since Todd Boehly bought the club. And sanctioned a £600 million spending spree on 18 players in the last two transfer windows. It was a record for any club in a single season. Sixteen of the 33 players used by Chelsea in all competitions this season have made their debuts. Chelsea and Potter have been given a little leeway. As the former Brighton manager attempts to create his best team from a squad that is still getting to know one another.
This season, they have made 21 more changes to their starting XIs in the Premier League than any other team. It was with only Nottingham Forest using more players. The high transfer costs naturally create an expectation of immediate returns. Arsenal was on the verge of acquiring Mykhailo Mudryk in January before Chelsea intervened. And instead signed seasoned Premier League forward Leandro Trossard for a fraction of the amount.
Last weekend, Mudryk scored his first goal in the Premier League. Trossard’s hat-trick of assists the next day means he now averages a goal or assist every 65 minutes since joining the league leaders.