How have Chelsea's summer signings fared so far?
This summer transfer market witnessed some crazy and outrageous amounts paid for players which may not be their actual worth when their qualities are brought in to comparison to the amounts paid.
Premier League champions Chelsea spent over £150million in the summer, with Antonio Conte keen to add more depth to his options at Stamford Bridge with a view to retaining the Premier League title he won last season (his first season in England) and to make a statement in the Champions League.
With Diego Costa told he was no longer needed at the club, Nemanja Matic joining Manchester United, John Terry moving to Aston Villa and a host of young players exiting the club either on loan or permanently, Conte quite well understood the need to bolster his squad ahead of the new season.
Even though the Italian manager was not totally satisfied with the performance of his club in the summer transfer market, he was able to make some acquisitions that are expected to bring positive results for him.
The London club has endured a mixed start to their title defence and with the Blues a potential 11 points away from the top of the table in third place, what have Conte’s summer signings have brought to the club?
Alvaro Morata (£58 million)
The club-record signing was brought in to replace his Spain team-mate Diego Costa and he has made a bright start to life at the club. However, his goal tally is low to what Costa contributed at this stage after he signed for Chelsea in 2014. Nine goals returning all competitions for the amount he was signed is not really impressive, especially when compared with Mohamed Salah’s 15 goals return for Liverpool.
Morata scored 20 goals for Real Madrid last season, mostly as a substitute, so now as the main striker, he is expected to already have his goal tally in double figures for his new club. He has only managed two goals in his last eight leagues matches and eight league goals in total.
Tiemoue Bakayoko (£40 million)
Yet to really impress in a Blues shirt, Bakayoko overall performance so far has not justified why Chelsea forked out that amount to sign him from Monaco. He was signed as a replacement for Nemanja Matic, with Conte preferring a younger player at the heart of his midfield defence but the Frenchman has only made cameo appearances and has failed to replicate his Monaco form at Chelsea.
Last season with the Ligue 1 club, he was difficult to defend against and helped Monaco to Ligue 1 triumph and a semi-final finish in the Champions League. His passing accuracy and defensive contribution have dropped while his clearance and interceptions per game are also low compared to last season.
Antonio Rudiger (£29 million)
The German defender signed from Roma has been impressive for Chelsea. His defensive abilities have been superb; he showed that when he came on as a substitute against his former club in Italy last month and can only get better. He fits well into Conte's style of play and has already made 16 appearances in all competitions for Chelsea.
Danny Drinkwater (£35 million)
The Englishman made a deadline day transfer move to Chelsea from Leicester City and has just returned to full fitness. He made his first start for the Blues against Liverpool on Saturday and was impressive, though a solitary game is not enough to judge. With Bakayoko still struggling for form, a midfield of Drinkwater, Kante and Fabregas would look fantastic.
Davide Zappacosta (£23 million)
The Italian joined Chelsea from Torino on the last day of the transfer market and he is still adjusting to the tempo of the Premier League. He has the potential to be a good buy for Chelsea and compete with Victor Moses at the right-back.