Former Blue tells Chelsea to copy Arsenal’s strategy

Cesar Azpilicueta training
Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Chelsea have become one of the most successful British teams over the past two decades.

However, it’s now a new era under Todd Boehly, after Roman Abramovich’s 19 and a half years at the club.

Chelsea operated a massive loan policy that saw tons of players develop away on loan, with the club going on to get profit from their sales later on.

Thomas Tuchel has bemoaned that he has so many unhappy players who want to leave the club, and the club is yet to get a replacement for them. So far, they haven’t been allowed to leave.

Former Chelsea midfielder Andy Townsend, has told Chelsea to copy Arsenal’s strategy and let go of certain players from the team.

Townsend told talkSPORT: “I think now, under the new owners, it’s time for a change – a change of policy and the thought process that goes on around the club, the hoarding of players, which they’ve done over the years.

“When I read Thomas Tuchel’s quotes, ‘We have a lot of players who are thinking about leaving’, I’m hearing about Michy Batshuayi and Ross Barkley playing – this idea that these guys are going to kick in and come good? It’s fantasy.

“There is no chance they will take Chelsea back above Liverpool and Manchester City. They need to start adopting a different approach. Of course you need a squad, but they need to be younger and more dynamic.

“The club have an opportunity to rethink having so many kids out on loan, I appreciate that it makes them money, but when you’ve been at the very top, they need better players to get back there.

“You need guys who are gasping to get hold of a shirt and play. Chelsea don’t have that. They have too many sitting around.

“You can see that when Conor Gallagher puts the shirt on – he’s going to give his all. Chelsea need more of that. They’ve got tons of players here, there and everywhere.

“What Mikel Arteta has done, along with Edu, is got rid of the culture at Arsenal where Ozil and Aubameyang get big deals and then switch off.

“That is not the culture you want to show young players like Smith Rowe, Saka and Nketiah. At Chelsea, this money-making machine they’ve had is backfiring.

“It’s creating a culture that you can get crazy money and do very little.

“Azpilicueta is a brilliant, committed professional. He gives his heart and soul. Now he wants to go back to Barcelona at this stage of his career.

“They’re not letting him go. He’ll be looking around at others thinking, ‘How are they still here picking up money and they won’t let me go after what I’ve given this club?’

“To stimulate those young players, you can’t have players sitting about doing nothing.”