A time for change in Chelsea's transfer policy

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Football News

For well over 10 years it's become almost expected that Chelsea will make a big signing during the summer transfer window.

Since Roman Abramovich took ownership of the club, he has put his stamp on it season after season by buying some of the biggest players in the world. 

However, after a number of big name stars failed to perform last season, perhaps it is time to change the philosophy of the team.


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Instead of buying the best players on the planet, emphasis should be shifted towards growing and nurturing a new breed of talented footballers through the club's academy, rather than diving deep into the transfer market. 

With incoming manager Antonio Conte set to take charge at Stamford Bridge following the conclusion of Euro 2016, one of the first questions he has to ask surrounds the squad he's adopted.

Is there enough talent already within the Chelsea ranks to challenge for silverware next season? The short answer is yes.

A squad like Chelsea's, with the players they have, should always be fighting for titles. Names like Cesc Fabregas, Diego Costa, Pedro, and Eden Hazard are mentioned as being some of Europe's elite, but last season, they failed to spark their team to success.

In years gone by, Abramovich would see these underperforming stars and use them as the perfect excuse to be replaced with the world's hottest football prospects, but over the past few seasons, the Russian billionaire has been less ready to dig into his deep pockets.   

Perhaps he is concerned with the expectation that comes with a price tag. Some of Chelsea's most expensive signings, the likes of Andriy Shevchenko and Fernando Torres, have simply not lived up to these high expectations, and as Conte is happy to hold on to his most valuable players, there will be little money made this summer.  

So instead of looking to the market, Conte should use the resources available to him.

Chelsea's youth set-up is one of the best in Europe, but year after year the players that come through the academy are shifted off elsewhere, either on loan or permanently. This has spectacularly backfired in the past.

Occasionally, some do break into the first team. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is a first team squad player now, following his debut under Jose Mourinho a couple of seasons ago, but having just the odd one isn't enough.

There may be a simple and affordable solution for Conte to find success. He must play a team that has a balance of talent, youth, and experience. Keep the likes of Hazard on the wing, and Costa up front, but instead of spending £40 million on a new striker, Conte must trust his current starter to do the business.

If Costa can't, Conte can take a chance on Loic Remy, or even Patrick Bamford, players who don't normally start, to come on and change a game. There is no sense in spending a huge amount of money on a striker if it means benching another big name.    

Having said this, it seems that Chelsea are once again preparing to spend big on a new striker, as they close in on Marseille's Michy Batsuayi.

The current defense is solid. Once Kurt Zouma returns from the horror injury that ruled him out of the latter part of last season, Chelsea will have one of the strongest defenses in the league. Gary Cahill is as good as anyone on the market at the moment, and the same goes for wing-back Cesar Azpilicueta.  

Conte then may ask to strengthen one position more than the others this summer. The midfield.

It's a key part to Conte's style and plan, and without two solid midfield players, the team will not function. Cesc Fabregas is a top player on his day, meaning Abramovich may only need to buy one player.

A number of names have been linked with the club, with Paul Pogba and Radja Nainggolan being the club's top targets, according to reports.

Pogba may be a little out of the price range, Juventus would demand almost a world record fee, but Nainggolan is more affordable, and the club are hoping to wrap up a deal for the Belgian this week, as they make a third bid to Roma.      

If Conte gets his one big name signing this summer, then there is no reason Chelsea can't challenge for silverware once again next season.

This year they may do it without breaking the bank, and instead, start to push a philosophy that emphasises working for the future, whilst still being successful in the short term.     

Do Chelsea need a change of transfer policy? Let us know YOUR thoughts in the comment section below!

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Premier League
Diego Costa
Frank Lampard
Didier Drogba
John Terry
Eden Hazard
Francesc Fabregas

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