Chelsea fans in the Univworgers were left to rue a 0-0 draw at home to Arsenal on Sunday, as their excellent week came to a frustrating end.
Antonio Conte’s men began the week with a fine 2-1 success at Leicester City to secure a third successive Premier League victory, and they then kicked off their Champions League campaign with a 6-0 thrashing of Qarabag at Stamford Bridge in midweek.
Yet they weren’t able to make it five consecutive wins in all competitions after only mustering a goalless draw against Arsenal on Sunday, which brought about the first time the Blues had been unable to score at home under Conte.
And the stalemate with Arsene Wenger’s Gunners did somewhat highlight exactly how good Chelsea striker Diego Costa was last season, with the Spaniard netting crucial goals in narrow successes during the autumn and Christmas period, which ultimately spurred them onto the Premier League title.
However, the 28-year-old has been excelled by manager Conte and reports suggest that he may well secure a move back to Atletico Madrid in January, over three years since he left the Spanish capital to team up with the West London outfit.
And Costa’s departure could bring about further change at Stamford Bridge come the New Year, and as such here are TWO other players who might follow the Spaniard out of the club in January…
There was speculation over the summer regarding the future of Willian, with Manchester United a reported destination to link up once again with Jose Mourinho.
However, the Brazil international himself affirmed his desire to remain at Chelsea, although you wonder whether, when Eden Hazard is fit, exactly how much first team football he’ll get at Stamford Bridge.
The 29-year-old may well have played 34 times in the Premier League for the Blues last season, but only 15 of those were starts, suggesting that, when everybody’s fit, he’s unlikely to command a place in Conte’s starting eleven.
European commitments may change that, but if Willian is indeed reduced to a bench spot more prominently between now and January, his future could again be subject to much speculation.
Diego Costa’s excel must have given Michy Batshuayi renewed confidence in his bid to resurrect his Chelsea career, although Alvaro Morata’s arrival has blighted his chances once more.
And that could lead to the Belgium international leaving Stamford Bridge in January in a bid for regular first team football.
The 23-year-old still managed five goals in 20 Premier League appearances for the Blues last season, only one of which was a start, to suggest that he does indeed have the talent and potential to be lethal at this level, but it’s unlikely that it will be fulfilled, at least in the immediate future, at Chelsea.
With Costa likely to leave in January, Chelsea may well seek further attacking reinforcements, which could spell the end for Batshuayi at Stamford Bridge.