Following what can be a successful season for Chelsea fans with ‘Chelsea FC’ engraved on the Champions League trophy, Chelsea have dipped into the summer transfer market by announcing deals for Eden Hazard of Lille, Marko Marin of Wender Bremen and Kevin De Bruyne of Genk. The west London club have been heavily linked with Inter Milan’s Brazilian full back Maicon, with reports suggesting terms have been agreed with the player coming to England in the next week to complete a deal. There is also the small case of a pending transfer for Porto’s winger/striker Hulk, who seems desperate (although he is now playing it down) to join the Champions League winners of 2012. With these signings, Chelsea have looked to strengthen early on in the market, to ensure they will not be held ransom over the price of players towards the end of the market, and we will look to how the club will set up in the new season with these signings.
This is likely to be the easiest choice for the manager, with Petr Cech ending the season strong with heroic performances in Barcelona as well as Munich. Bar injury, the Czech keeper is certain to start in goal for the club, with Ross Turnbull occupying the bench, as Thibaut Courtois has extended his loan with Athletico Madrid.
A. Cole – Terry – Luiz/Cahill – Maicon/Ivanovic
With the now expected arrival of Maicon at Stamford Bridge, it is difficult to determine whether he will get the nod ahead of Ivanovic. With Bosingwa released, it is likely to be one or the other, and Maicon may be preferred as Chelsea look to gain the best out of the Brazilian who is approaching 30, so the club will look to make the most of his strong running while he still has the attribute. The other choice Di Matteo will have is who will partner Terry in the centre of defence for the club, with David Luiz and Gary Cahill both producing strong defensive displays towards the end of last season. Although Luiz seems to now have settled at the club, looking like more of a ball playing defender, Cahill may get the nod ahead of him because he is considered more disciplined out of the 2, and also benefitting from lining up alongside Terry for the national team. Ashley Cole is certain to start at left back, with Ryan Bertrand given the duty during League Cup and FA Cup fixtures.
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