Chelsea: Abramovich's transformation plan; Courtois slams team-mate; midfielder commits to club
The Daily Mail report that Roman Abramovich and his advisers have formulated a new plan to ensure success for the club in the future which includes a top secret list of transfer targets, bringing through more talented youngsters and copying Manchester United’s commercial growth off the field. Abramovich is believed to have identified a number of the world’s best players as targets to sign in the near future, along with Antonio Conte, and his team will now work on how to secure those deals. It will also give new opportunities to the likes of Nathaniel Chalobah, Reuben Loftus-Cheek and Tammy Abraham as they hope to avoid the fates of the likes of Ryan Bertrand and Josh McEachran is being frozen out of the first team despite promising starts.
Abramovich also recognises the importance of success off the field in order to fund the team on it, as recognised by his plans to reinvent the commercial branch of the club to help market the Londoners in the Middle East, Asia and America. The Russian wants to see his club back on the radar as one of the biggest and best sides in the world, and is clearly going to provide Antonio Conte with the best opportunity to achieve that.
However, Conte will not be helped by conflicts within the side, as the Express claim that Thibaut Courtois has publicly criticised Eden Hazard for showboating and losing possession in his nation’s 6-0 World Cup qualifying victory over Gibraltar, saying:
I was angry with Eden Hazard because he tried a backheel in a part of the pitch where he shouldn’t have. I yelled to everyone understood that we had to stay sharp. We had little to gain here. We showed we respected our opponent. We have one and a half more years to improve and be ready for the World Cup.
However, there appeared to be no tension between the two players in the game, and Conte will be hoping that Hazard is not offended by his goalkeeper’s comments as the pair return to London for training ahead of this weekend’s clash with Leicester.
There is some great news for the club in the Daily Mail as last year’s player of the year Willian has laughed off speculation linking the Brazilian with a move to PSG, as he told the press:
I read some things in the press on this topic but personally, I never received a concrete offer from PSG. My family feels good in London and I love the Premier League, which is the best in the world. I am growing in a team that plays beautiful football, something which is important in my eyes. For all of these reasons, I intend to see out my contract and perhaps even extend it a little further if the club offers me the chance. It would be a privilege to finish my career at a club as big as Chelsea.
Such statements are exactly what Abramovich will want to hear as he seeks to re-establish his club at the highest level, with Willian proving to be a key man in Conte’s team and in their attacking play.
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