Reasons Why Chelsea Won't Win the League

Can Terry rediscover his form in time to rescue Chelsea?

For the entirety of the season, Chelsea have seemed poised to put insurmountable distance between  themselves and the nearest opposition.  Yet this moment never arrived.  Draws and losses, often at those crucial games, have seen them lose ground in the Premier League, till now the gap between first place glory and second ignominy is one point.

The question is, can Chelsea fulfill its promise of this season and reclaim the domestic throne, or will they once again see the trophy lifted elsewhere?

In this article, I’ll discuss the reasons that they’ll lose; in another, I’ll discuss why they’ll win.

1.  Defensive Injuries

Ashley Cole had been the world’s superlative left back until a recent injury.  An excellent defender and a constant option going into attack, Cole’s injury sees Chelsea lose a unique weapon.  His pace allows him both to neutralize opposition counter attacks and beat their defenders at the other end of the pitch.

In fact, Chelsea did have a more than adequate (and for £18 million, he should be) replacement in Yuri Zhirkov.  He too, is sidelined with injury, though not for as long as Cole.  Florent Malouda, an attacking winger, is now the starting left back.  Remarkably, he seemed totally capable against both Inter and Manchester City.

Even if he works in the makeshift back four, Malouda’s repositioning robs Chelsea of an attacking threat that, for parts of the season, had gelled very well with Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka.  None of his attacking replacements — Daniel Sturridge, Salomon Kalou, Joe Cole — have been able to reproduce the same cohesive, potent football that made Chelsea favorites among many spectators for much of the season.

Petr Cech’s injury is another large blow.  As witnesses to Chelsea’s recent home loss to Man City can attest, Hilario is not the same as the Czech in goal.  He’s not even the same as former backup Carlo Cudicini.  The first two goals he allowed against the Citizens were questionable, and many will be wondering how many points will be dropped if he continues to concede softly in Cech’s absence.

Even when players do return from injury, there’s no guarantee they’ll find their form immediately.  In fact, quite the opposite should be expected, although a match unfit Cole/Zhirkov and Cech are surely better for Chelsea than an out of position Malouda and Hilario.

2.  Fixture List and Form

Put simply, Chelsea have hard games with which they must finish out the season.  Though they have the quality to collect maximum points in March, a visit from Aston Villa could prove to be challenging, and after that, it gets only worse.  The Blues must play away to Man United, Tottenham, and Liverpool in the final month and a half of the season.

Manchester United also have challenging fixtures during the final stretch, but at least they have the luxury of facing Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham at Old Trafford.  They do have a tricky away match to their rivals Man City, but other than that, the challenging away fixtures have been navigated.

Arsenal have by far the easiest finale to the season.  They have two legitimately difficult matches in a home Man City game and visit to White Hart Lane.  Just three points off Chelsea, Gunners fans surely fancy hounding their rivals all the way to the end, especially with their respective fixtures in mind.

In any case, the fixture list favors Chelsea’s on form competitors.

Obviously, Chelsea’s form is also worrying, and not only in their dropped points.  The amount of goals they’ve let in over the past handful of games suggests a former strength turned weakness.  Admittedly, conceding 4 against Man City while fielding a wildly attacking force and playing two men down isn’t a fair estimation of Chelsea’s defense, but one must admit  the overall slackness in defending (now down to third in goals conceded, behind Villa and United) is not a good sign.

3. John Terry

Finally, the collapse of John Terry must be mentioned.  His form has been more than just suspect of late.  He allowed himself to be absolutely hosed down by Milito for the opening goal in the UCL Inter game, and put in another decidedly mediocre performance at the Bridge against City.  Normally poor form merits benching, but as the captain and emblem of Chelsea, no one is willing to do this.  Everyone throws their faith behind him and hopes his form improves.  Meanwhile, on the pitch, it depreciates.  This does not bode well for Chelsea, especially as the team relies on Terry for more than just defensive heroics.

Is all lost for Chelsea?  Obviously not.  It’s a top club with enough class to win the league and then some.  Coming soon, I’ll show how the Blues might do just that.

15 thoughts on “Reasons Why Chelsea Won't Win the League”

  1. I think the defensive woes are going to be a problem for Chelsea the most defenders and goal keepers get no credit at all but look at it this way.

    If your a striker and you make a mistake its not a big deal but if youre a goal keeper and you make a mistake you don’t usually get away with it at all. Having an in form defense is important the only reason Manchester United haven’t run into problems is due to Rooneys high tally. United have let past a lot more goals than last year but Rooneys huge tally has meant they outscored most of their opponents.

  2. I don’t know if the focus on Terry is a little overdone. He has been without Cole and Bosingwa (their two best left and right backs) and Michael Essien (possibly the best defensive midfielder in the world) and for the last game had Hilario behind him instead of an injured Petr Cech.

    I agree with the upcoming fixtures and injuries though being a huge problem. And this was somewhat predicted by some here when the African Cup of Nations came around. I thought they had come together quite well after the preseason tour and the first half of the season, but once Drogba left, Essien got hurt, and Anelka went from being able to attack at will to falling out of form when Drogba returned AND too many fixtures for their Champions League and FA Cup runs and a slightly older/veteran team seems to be breaking down.

  3. Welcome to the world of Arsenal,Liverpool and ManU -Chelski! The Gunners have 9 players out, 3 for the entire season, 2 more for the medium term and a few who keep bouncing in and out of the squad depending on who knocks them hard enough like Eduardo,Vela,Rosicky,Walcott and Diaby. They have a 2nd rate keeper (probably the worst in the EPL) and have fielded the same team only twice in the entire season up until now. Liverpool have had Torres and Gerrard out for 20% of the season, have less than a lacklustre midfield without them and have to rely on Lukas, Kuyt, Babel and Ngog. They are on the verge of financial chaos as well! ManU have had Ferdinand and Vidic out for 30%, They have major financial issues and a definite lack of reserve strength with the likes of Scholes,Nani,Carrick,Anderson and Berbatov wasting space most of the time.
    Despite this, both ManU and Arsenal are breathing down Chelski’s neck so let the Blues stop being blue about it…this is the EPL!

    1. uhm, i don’t think they are blue about it Domhuaille. why do you write like you’re telling them off for something they’ve done? also, they’ve complained less about games than any other of the big four teams this year.

  4. hi guys! to be champions you have to beat champions. we have done that. some teams play for one or two games then they are done. but chelsea plays every game. a loss to man city is not the end of it. man city want to beat the top for to justify their strength. they can do that but still wont finish top four. it will still be the same old guards. came end of the season you will see chelsea win the league man u runners up and arsenal the third. man city will will only qualify for uefa cup which is what they deserves.

  5. I can’t believe I’m saying this but I now think Arsenal have a great chance of winning the league.

    Chelsea are spluttering, as are Man Utd. The more teams smell the blood, the more they’ll be emboldened to attack. Part of the big-4’s strength is their aura of invincibility which encourages the other teams not to even try. That has been shattered this season.

    Arsenal, though, are starting to hit a groove and they have the easiest run-in.

    Advantage Arsenal!

  6. Guess you were wrong in your analysis mate. Better luck next time. Its blues all the way this season and they’ll remain so for a few more seasons to come.

    In the meanwhile you can keep analysing why other teams would fail against Chelsea in the coming seasons!


  7. Let me guess, your a United fan? (suprise suprise). Or maybe your not but your scared of Chelsea, like most people who say they won’t win. Be as optimistic as you like, Chelsea have scored 21 goals already, infact they scored 12 in 2 games. Chelsea will dominate this year, and Arsenal could shortly follow, sorry Manc fans Chelsea are the best by far.

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