Chelsea lack the alternative approach with no Rooney or Lukaku!

Sitting watching Chelsea struggle to break Everton down in the second half on Saturday night highl...

Sitting watching Chelsea struggle to break Everton down in the second half on Saturday night highlighted a simple fact for me, We have no alternative up front. It's been a problem we have come up against ever since Didier Drogba left Chelsea and we have struggled to cope ever since!

I am talking about an alternative here. We had one in Romelu Lukaku but a decision was made to let him leave on loan and that option has disappeared.

There is an argument that since the beginning of the 2005 season, teams have changed their approach to playing Chelsea. The big guns such as the United's, Man City's and Arsenal's will always have a go to try and beat you but teams generally park the bus against us, defend deep with men behind the ball and set themselves up to close down any space inside their own half.

It's obvious at Stamford Bridge week in, week out but also away from home and Saturday was a perfect example. Once again, like numerous times before, we tried to play the same way and walk the ball into the back of the net rather than change our approach and failed.

The second half was dominated by Chelsea and you could see that Everton knew that they would have to defend for the most part and were quite happy to do so. They were well organised, disciplined (how many times did you see Leighton Baines get forward) and worked very hard to close us down.

Jose made his substitutions but they are pretty much like for like and we still tried and failed playing the same way. Everton defended with a wall of blue shirts on the edge of their box and coped with everything we threw at them. At times it was just far too easy.

Chelsea need an option to mix up our play. We are heavily reliant on the attacking three to create and craft for us. To open the door and provide the team with goalscoring opportunities. What happens when they are unable to do so when a team sits deep and doubles up men against the likes of Eden Hazard? We get nowhere and have to revert to passing the ball backwards.

I said it at the time and will say it again now, I can see why Jose wanted to sign Wayne Rooney. Think back to our double winning seasons of 2004/2005 and think of Eidur Gudjohnsen. Yes we had Drogba the powerhouse up top and the natural goalscoring instincts of Kezman (well, we thought at the time!) but Gudjohnsen gave Jose an alternative option, a link man.

Our midfield three could play the ball into Eidur and he would either hold it up and Robben and Duff into play or would turn and lay the ball of wide moving forward quickly on the counter. He was the perfect link man and remains one of the most underrated players I have ever seen in my life.

Rooney would have provided Mourinho with the same option and I personally believe this is the reason he wanted to sign him. Rooney playing off of the main striker or as a Gudjohnsen type of forward for Mourinho this time around. It's a massive blow to Mourinho's plans that he remains at Old Trafford.

The second alternative option would have been Romelu Lukaku. Jose has played down comparisons between him and Drogba but I believe they are quite similar.

He has a powerful frame due to his size and has a presence on the pitch. He also has pace to burn and at the age he is, will only get better and better.

In keeping Lukaku at Chelsea, he would have provided us with a perfect option in games like Everton. After 60 minutes of the game or so, seeing that we are having problems breaking them down, why not throw Lukaku on and change our approach? Whether it's pumping balls up to him to hold the ball up and feed off of him, play crosses into the box to put him up against Distin and Jagielka or for him to just get up there and shake things up and give the two of them a different problem to deal with, Lukaku would have given us the alternative.

Jose spoke last week of making changes within games to try and chase results, the problem he faces and would have realised as the Everton game finished, is that these players still play a certain style and are no different to those on the pitch already.

Chelsea lack the alternative and it's something that needs to be addressed.

Carefree & KTBFFH!


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