KEVIN DE BRUYNE & CHELSEA - HINDSIGHT IS A WONDERFUL THING..
Chelsea take on Manchester City at Stamford Bridge this evening and plenty of focus will turn on...
Hindsight is a wonderful thing isn't it. If we had the ability to see how much of an influence and an impact in games he was going to be at Wolfsburg first and then Manchester City then I am 100% certain that we would not have sold him. In life there are certain moments and certain situations that will work for you or against you and it's purely down to timing. The simple answer in my opinion is that we signed him at the wrong time.
This is where you look at our loan policy at the minute and you can see where it has it's advantages in my view. For example, we signed KDB from Genk and he remained on loan for the remainder of the season in Belgium. Once the season was completed, he came to Chelsea and became a member of our first team squad - and we all know how it played out.
If he came to Chelsea, took part in our pre-season and was then loaned to Wolfsburg for example for a season BEFORE a decision was made for him to become a permanent member of our first team squad then I believe it would have been a very different story.
Plenty of people heavily criticise our policy and numerous references are made throughout this season for example at the numbers of players we continually have on loan. Last season, as we became Champions for the first time in five years, winning the League Cup in addition and setting a record for the longest period a team has sat top of the league in one season, no one questioned it but just made observations instead. This season being the nightmare it has turned out to be is very different as we all know.
These players in their late teens and early twenties need to be playing regular football, they need proper match experience. Just look at how KDB has grown as a player by being given that in Germany for a couple of seasons and now Manchester City.
Manuel Pellegrini spoke of KDB yesterday and in my opinion summed it up perfectly:
"Maybe three years ago Kevin wasn’t the same player as he is now.
Seeing him play, he has a lot of condition to be a very important player.
He didn’t have the chances at Chelsea because they had more important players at that moment. He was young."
You see, he emphasises my point perfectly. KDB joined Chelsea at the wrong time and it really is that simple. He came to Chelsea at a time where Jose Mourinho wanted our players to play a certain way and to work hard without the ball. He adopts a "high block" approach to his tactics where he expects ALL the attacking players to defend and press high up the pitch.
Unfortunately if we are honest, the likes of KDB and Juan Mata were never going to be those type of players and instead flourish on being released from those constraints to be allowed to express themselves in attacking areas without the need to track back.
I mentioned hindsight earlier and you have to agree that all of us right now would have loved to see him still here. We sat and watched his European Knights like performance against PSG the other night, his use of the ball, his influence and of course his goal and recognise that he has become a key player for Manchester City in both the Premier League and on the big stage.
I bear no grudges against KDB or Chelsea for what happened because it was simply down to timing.
What do you people think?