After a poor season, most clubs react by indulging in a transfer binge to try and ensure they possess the necessary assets to recover ahead of the next campaign. However, Chelsea's situation has sunk so low that it seems such a cause of action won't be an option.
With the Blues' Champions League aspirations withering by the week, one of the club's main pull factors will be severed. In addition, if the Stamford Bridge side continues to churn out stale draws, they may even be absent from the Europa League.
It's becoming increasingly apparent that the club may have substantial difficulties when it comes to attracting some of the game's biggest stars.
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Although Guus Hiddink's arrival has prompted something of an upsurge in west London, the club had dug themselves too deep of a hole in the early months of the campaign to sufficiently recover.
Improvements are clear to see and previously struggling players such as Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa are slowing returning to their form of 2015-16. The only way is up for Chelsea but they remain ten points adrift of the top four with only eight games left to play.
While an unlikely assault on the Champions League places is still possible, it speaks volumes that Stoke City have a greater chance of clambering into the top four.
It would be unwise to write off the Blues, particularly in a season so unique that Leicester City perch in first, but it would be a safe assumption that they will be absent from Europe. Unfortunately for Chelsea fans, it's an inevitability they must prepare to accept.
The main detriment that will arise from this likely absence is undoubtedly the club's pulling power in the transfer market. Modern day footballers crave the Champions League and it's set to be a prospect the west London side will no longer be able to offer.
Not only are there fears that this nonappearance will prompt players to leave the club but there can be equal concern that the Blues would be unable to garner adequate replacements.
Manchester United faced a similar issue after their calamitous 2013-14 campaign. Despite this, the Red Devils did manage to capture Angel di Maria, yet it must be remembered that United have a knack of attracting players via the club's prestige and history.
Chelsea far from lack history but it cannot rival that of their northern rivals. The Blues' best hope lies with money and with Roman Abramovich pulling the strings, they certainly possess the financial brawn to tempt players.
Nonetheless however, clubs such as Manchester City and Arsenal aren't far behind in the financial department and are more likely to provide Champions League football. A footballer's career is short and long-term contracts are becoming increasingly prevalent so few world-class players are likely to take a gamble on a club absent from Europe.
This isn't to say that Chelsea won't be able to attract mercurial talents but this particular aspect will undoubtedly hamper their strength at the negotiating table. The club is and will continue to pay the price for an anarchic start to their season.
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