Paul Merson rates Chelsea FC’s summer signings and Champions League hopes

Paul Merson explains why he thinks that Chelsea FC will be one of the favourites to win the Champions League next season

Thomas Tuchel
Thomas Tuchel (Photo: Chelsea TV / Screengrab)

Paul Merson has been impressed by Chelsea FC’s summer transfer business and is tipping the Blues to be one of the main contenders for the Champions League title next season.

The south west London side have moved to bring in the likes of Raheem Sterling and Kalidou Koulibaly this summer as Thomas Tuchel gears up for his second full season in charge of the Blues.

Chelsea FC are also believed to be closing in on the signing of Sevilla defender Jules Kounde as they look to bolster their options at the back ahead of the new campaign.

Tuchel will be hoping for his side to be one of the main challengers for the Premier League title next season as they bid to improve on their third-placed finish from last term.

Chelsea FC will also be aiming to compete in the Champions League, having won the title under Tuchel in 2021 and having reached the quarter-finals last season.

Former Arsenal and England star Merson has been impressed by the signings that Chelsea FC have made and he thinks that the south west London side will be one of the main challengers for the Champions League crown next season.

Writing in his column for Sportskeeda, Merson said: “Chelsea have already signed Kalidou Koulibaly and Raheem Sterling and if rumors are to be believed, Sevilla defender Jules Kounde is close to joining the club.

“The likes of Kounde and Koulibaly alongside Thiago Silva as part of a back three is as solid as it gets, while Trevoh Chalobah, Malang Sarr and the likes could be termed as able deputies. That backline has got it all, the only thing you can say is that neither Koulibaly nor Silva are particularly young.

“You have to be tight at the back to win the Champions League and Chelsea have been defensively tidy under Thomas Tuchel, while Reece James and Ben Chilwell – who I regard as the best pair of full-backs in world football – can make things happen on both ends of the pitch.

“As for their midfield, they have three solid options in Mateo Kovacic, N’Golo Kante and Jorginho, while Conor Gallagher could also be part of the first-team squad this season after a successful loan spell at Crystal Palace.

“Sterling is a player I really admire – he makes things happen in attack. People slander him for the chances he misses, but he does really well to get into goal-scoring positions and was a key player for Pep Guardiola at Manchester City.

“I’ve put Chelsea at number three [of the English favourites to win the Champions League], but they can easily be one or two if their new players settle in quickly.

“The only thing that worries me is that they haven’t got a bonafide goal-scorer, but I don’t think that is much of an issue when it comes to cup competitions where they can keep it tight at the back and nick it with a goal at the other end.”

Chelsea FC will kick off their new campaign with a trip to face their old boss Frank Lampard’s Everton side on the opening weekend of the season.

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