Since winning the UEFA Champions League in 2021, Chelsea Football Club has found themselves amid a rebuild that saw the majority of the club’s older talent shopped out in favor of raw and unproven talent. With Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital purchasing the club from longtime owner Roman Abramovich on May 30, 2022, there was a real sense of loss among fans as they saw the owner who led them to Premier League and Champions League glory unceremoniously shown the door.
Boehly comes from a baseball background, being a part-time owner of the LA Dodgers. This became apparent quickly, as many members of the Chelsea backroom staff were sent packing, and decisions around setting up the squad moved away from football norms. Months into the 2022-23 season, Chelsea’s Champions League-winning manager, Thomas Tuchel, was sacked and replaced with inexperienced Brighton manager Graham Potter. Under Potter (who lasted less than seven months in charge), Chelsea’s attack struggled, and the team worked to play from behind. There was a sense among supporters that the Boehly project was reaping the results that may become the norm with this new and unproven ownership group. Across the 2022-23 season, the team registered an average of one goal a game, well below what would be needed to sustain winning results. They ended last season 12th in the table, well below expectations.
Coming off the back of the 2022-23 season, the club spent abundantly in the transfer market and, throughout Boehly's time in charge, has topped the staggering amount of £ 1 billion in new signings. They sold many of the key players of their run to the top of Europe, including homegrown talent Mason Mount, Champions League final star Kai Havertz, and the reliable midfield pair of Mateo Kovacic and Jorginho.
In response to these sales, they brought in young talents, including World Cup winner Enzo Fernandez, Moises Caicedo, and Ukrainian speedster Mykaylo Mudruk. In their never-ending search for the club’s next number 9, they brought in Christopher Nkuku and Nikolas Jackson, and Jackson has recently found his shooting boots again, registering his first Premier League hat trick against Chelsea’s perennial rivals Tottenham Hotspur.
During the 2023 summer window, the club appointed Mauricio Pochettino as their new manager, and despite a questionable start to the season, the team has turned around their form in recent weeks with stunning results against some of the top sides in the table. In the last two weeks, they provided a comprehensive 4-1 dismantling of Tottenham, and last weekend, the even more stunning 4-4 draw against heavyweights Manchester City.
The current star of this young team is a deadline day signing from Manchester City, Cole Palmer, who stepped up late into injury time against his old club to drill a penalty and take the game level. He has yet to miss a penalty for Chelsea and has provided four assists for his new club. This young man has been the team's lynchpin this season, and as the team continues to gel, the sky looks to be the limit for this Chelsea side.
Chelsea currently sit 10th in the table heading into the current international break, with their next match against Newcastle on Saturday, November 25.
(Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)