There is something very AC Milanish about Chelsea this season. Not today’s Milan’s but Milan of about 5-6 years ago: A team full of veterans, old warriors that might not show up to the battles on the domestic front but know how to get the results on the European battle field.
Chelsea seems to have an edge on European nights. It’s like some of the players know they are playing their last games for the club: Didier Drogba is fighting in socks off; Ashley Cole is just everywhere and Frank Lampard is flying into tackles. On European nights they are no longer a group of old stars with huge egos – they are fighters who are scarifying their bodies for one last chance of collective glory.
If Chelsea do finish below 4th this season it may just be about be the right time to cut huge wages off the budget. By cutting Anelka, Alex, Drogba, Lampard, Kalou, Malouda, Ferreira, Essien, and Cole, the Chelsea wage bill comes down by a million pounds a week. That’s £48 million a year, making Chelsea almost FFP compliant.
There’s no doubt that Roman Abramovich knows that. There’s no doubt some of the players know that.
I think between themselves they are even talking about it. They are saying to each other: “guys, these are our last days in the very top – give it all you got. We have just a few more games to win the European Cup”.
I think that is one hell of a motivational tool.