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Is Jose Mourinho right to think Chelsea only need Wayne Rooney?

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Following Chelsea's first bid for England striker Wayne Rooney - which was rejected firmly by Manchester United - Jose Mourinho claimed it was 'Rooney or Bust.' 

Mourinho sees the 27-year-old as the final piece of the puzzle as he looks to continue the success he brought to the Blues during his first tenure. 

Two questions remain however; would Rooney prove a worthwhile signing? And, is Rooney really the only player necessary to ensure Chelsea topple the two Manchester clubs and claim the Premier League trophy?

Chelsea have a well-documented, poor recent record when it comes to recruiting big-name strikers. Andriy Shevchenko and then Fernando Torres arrived at Stamford Bridge for large transfer fees, but both failed to replicate the form shown at AC Milan and Liverpool.

Chelsea can perhaps be accused of purchasing strikers because of their name, despite their careers beginning to decline. There is a chance that Rooney could also fall into this bracket. 

Rooney's performances last season were often criticised by Manchester United supporters, and these performances led to Sir Alex Ferguson dropping the previously indispensable striker for key fixtures. 

Contrary to this perceived decline however, Rooney's goals to game ratio last season was better than one in two, and the previous season, when played in his favoured position he bagged 27 Premier League goals. 

Assuming Rooney arrives at Chelsea at his peak; would he fit into this Chelsea side? Even when playing up front on his own, he often drops deep to receive possession. While this works at Manchester United and for England, that game may not prove so successful at Chelsea, due to the players likely to line up behind him. 

Last season Chelsea operated with Juan Mata, Eden Hazard and Oscar playing behind the striker, in the gap between midfield and the forward line. This is the area in which Rooney likes to operate, and playing all four of Rooney, Mata, Hazard ad Oscar may lead to Chelsea's build up play being tight and congested. 

Conversely, playing four similar players could see an almost telepathic understanding emerge leading to sublime, intricate interplay. 

If Mourinho has decided that a striker is the area which needs addressing, then an arguably better option would be to search for more of a target man, or an out-and-out goal scorer. The creativity provided by Mata, Hazard and Oscar could be utilised to feed a striker in the mould of Didier Drogba. 

Arguably such a striker is already on the books at Chelsea in the form of Belgian international Romelu Lukaku, who shone on loan at West Bromwich Albion last season, though Lukaku is still young and inexperience and would perhaps benefit from training alongside a similar more seasoned professional. 

Options though are limited, with Radamel Falcao and Edinson Cavani already completing transfers, and Robert Lewandowski looking set to join Bayern Munich next January. 

The only potential target is Paris Saint Germain striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic. The Swedish international has been linked with a move away from Parc de Princes this summer following Carlo Ancelotti's switch to the Santiago Bernabeu, with Real Madrid a possible destination for Ibrahimovic. 

If the Swede is looking to leave, Chelsea might wish to take advantage of this opportunity. While often criticised by some viewers as 'overrated' and 'not turning up in big games,' Ibrahimovic's record speaks for itself, with titles secured in Spain, Italy and France, and goals scored in abundance.

Zlatan may well fill the void left by Drogba, at least for a few years until Lukaku matures into the world class striker he's destined to become.

Mourinho has claimed that Rooney is his only target, which would suggest that he is content with the make-up of the rest of his squad, but is he right to feel so confident?

Certainly in the goalkeeping department, Chelsea can be pretty satisfied. Petr Cech remains a world class goalkeeper, despite his form beginning to show signs of decline, and in Mark Schwarzer there is an able deputy. Added to these two, on loan at Atletico Madrid for another season is highly rated Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who will look to claim the Chelsea number one jersey in the coming seasons.

Defensively too Chelsea look strong, assuming they can keep hold of rumoured Barcelona and Bayern Munich target David Luiz. With Luiz, Branislav Ivanovic, John Terry and Gary Cahill, Chelsea possess four quality centre-halves, with Ashley Cole and Cesar Azpilicueta solid full-backs.

The issue that Chelsea do have is in central midfield. Currently in the Chelsea squad as senior central midfielders are Ramires, Frank Lampard, John Obi Mikel and Michael Essien. Lampard at 35, and while still a fine player, will not be able to play each and every game. 

Essien has not looked the same player since his long-term injury a few seasons ago, and Mikel has rarely looked to be a top class midfielder, he is neither a tough tackling defensive midfielder, a box-to-box midfielder or a creative playmaker, he is pretty much the definition of average Premier League midfielder. 

Ramires has bags of energy and desire, perhaps lacking a creative spark, but his work rate is of paramount importance because of the use of three attacking midfielders in Chelsea's 4-2-3-1 formation. 

Chelsea could do with one more midfielder, one who can make a challenge, start Chelsea's build up with simple passing into the more creative players, while also contributing a few Lampard-esque late surges into the box to chip in with a few midfield goals. 

A player such as Roma's Daniele de Rossi has been touted, and De Rossi would hugely improve Chelsea's midfield. De Rossi is a world class midfielder, a World Cup winner, with a vast array of experience in European competition. 

With Roma struggling recently, failing to achieve Champions League football, the Italian international could be tempted to leave the Serie 'A' club. However in a world in which loyalty is hard to find, loyalty may well keep De Rossi in the Italian capital. Should this be the case then other options may include Real Madrid's Sami Khedira or Bayer Leverkusen's Lars Bender.

Rooney would most likely prove to be a fine signing for Chelsea, should Manchester United consider selling the want-away striker. But, Chelsea and Jose Mourinho should not be focusing solely on him, they also need one more central midfielder, and if both signings are made, then the Premier League trophy might well be returning to Stamford Bridge in 2014.

 

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Topics:
Football
Chelsea
Manchester United
Wayne Rooney

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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