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Chelsea were close but ultimately not good enough to win the Premier League title last season. They have added to their squad and Michael Laverty is here to discuss how they are shaping up ahead of the new Premier League season.

Whatever about their players Chelsea have a mastermind in Jose Mourinho, leading the team into the season ahead. Last season, Mourinho claimed that he had little opportunity to put a huge influence on his Chelsea team in terms of transfers, but he got an incredible return from the likes of Oscar and Eden Hazard during the season.

Andre Schurrle also did well last season, and he topped it off by being a part of the Germany World Cup winning team in Brazil.

Mourinho now has an excellent lineup to pick from within this Chelsea squad. With players like Hazard, Oscar and Schurrle stepping up last season, the question is whether ‘The Special One’ can develop and grow on Chelsea’s performances of last season.

This writer believes he can. Having finished third last season, Mourinho’s Chelsea are in the best position of all English teams for the forthcoming season.

Compared to last season, the player pool at Chelsea has improved. Players like Samuel Eto’o, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole have all left the club. Lampard and Cole will be missed most, both have been wonderful players to watch over the years. However, the Blues have brought in great quality in the form of club legend, Didier Drogba, who is a a much better option than Eto’o.

Cesc Fabregas has also come into the fold and he will be integral to the Chelsea midfield next season. Don’t be surprised to see him at the top of his game. Perhaps even Torres could benefit from the fellow Spaniard behind him in midfield.

Felipe Luiz from Atletico Madrid replaces Ashley Cole and Thibaut Courtois joins him as he returns to his parent club following successful loan spells. Both of these players have great Champions League experience having gone all the way to the final last season, and they both won La Liga ahead of Barcelona and Real Madrid.

Diego Costa has also come in from Atletico. He performed poorly during Spain’s World Cup campaign, but if he replicates his club form from last season, Mourinho will have pulled off a great piece of business in the transfer market. David Luiz, let’s not forget, has left Chelsea for approximately £50m earlier in the summer, and Mourinho has reinvested that money very well.

Chelsea at the moment look very strong for the coming season, and it would not be a huge surprise to see more transfer activity, in terms of arrivals and departures. Expect to see Chelsea challenging for the title next season.

One more defender and another midfielder might just add a bit more depth and quality to this already powerful Chelsea side, and despite concerns up front, Mourinho will be happy with the position he is currently in. He is a tactical mastermind and uses his personnel extremely well and to the squads’ advantage.

An exciting season awaits for Chelsea, and with more potential summer transfer business to be done, it would not be a huge surprise to see Chelsea lift the league title in May.

Chelsea are seen as many people’s favourites this season. They are a strong side who know how to win big games. In Europe, they look to be at least capable of the Champions League quarter-finals.

Michael Laverty, Pundit Arena.

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