If only there was an accountancy trick that could mask Chelsea’s awful numbers in front of goal. Unfortunately for Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital there is no way to amortise a home defeat to a ruthless Nottingham Forest. As Mauricio Pochettino heard the home fans greet the final whistle with fierce boos, it was strange to think that £1bn has gone into building a side so lacking in nous, leadership and ways to respond against opponents intent on frustrating them at Stamford Bridge.
The problems confronting Pochettino are nothing new given that Chelsea have earned 11 home wins in all competitions since the start of last season. This is a team bereft of edge in the final third, a team of young players who look unsure of themselves in tricky situations, and nobody who has been paying close attention to recent events here could say they were particularly surprised when Forest pounced on one defensive slip and stole the points thanks to Anthony Elanga’s clinical finish at the start of the second half.
This time last year Nottingham Forest were the ones ridiculed for their transfers, the club struggling for stability in a sea of pressure and noise. Now it is Chelsea and they were back, those full-time boos at Stamford Bridge. Mauricio Pochettino is charged with the task of bringing direction and a successful formula to a club challenged by the hyperactivity of their recruiters and owners.
He could do worse than study Steve Cooper. Over the past 12 months one of the best managerial jobs, by anyone anywhere, has been done by this humble, empathetic Welshman. Here, the day after losing his star player in Brennan Johnson — shipped to Tottenham Hotspur — Cooper engineered a famous win, Forest’s first at Stamford Bridge in 28 years, built on the unity and identity with which he has infused his club.
Built, despite all last season’s buying, selling and the scrutiny that followed a difficult start back in the top flight. Built on intensity, resilience, teamwork and a clever way of creating little moments of advantage against superior foes.
If only Chelsea were as good at winning football matches as they are at supposedly winning the transfer window.
Chelsea’s spending under their Clearlake Capital-Todd Boehly owners passed the £1 billion mark before the transfer window shut on Friday night.
Another 13 players arrived at Stamford Bridge this summer at a cost of almost £450 million and yet Chelsea have still only won 12 Premier League games since the Clearlake-Boehly takeover.
Chelsea have also been booed off more times by their home fans, as they were again on Saturday, than the number of victories they have secured since the start of last season.
Anthony Elanga’s second-half goal for Nottingham Forest was enough to pile more embarrassment on the league’s big spenders, who, for all the signings, still look short of somebody to put the ball in the net, with Nicolas Jackson providing his own miss-of-the-season contender.
Mauricio Pochettino did warn it will be a while before Chelsea start to look like how much they have cost.
Though he might not have expected more forceful evidence that backed up his tempering of expectations to come so quickly and against Nottingham Forest.
A day after Chelsea’s spending under their new owners ticked past the £1billion mark following the £42.5million arrival of Cole Palmer from Manchester City, Steve Cooper’s side turned up at Stamford Bridge and left with their first win here since 1995 and just their second on the road in 22 attempts since they returned to the Premier League last season.
As they have been under Pochetttino, Chelsea were the dominant side. But they made one big mistake in possession which was clinically punished by one of Forest’s own summer signings, substitute Anthony Elanga, and failed to make the most of the promising situations they created themselves. A bad combination.
Chelsea’s mixed start to the Premier League season continued as Nottingham Forest secured a famous 1-0 victory at Stamford Bridge.
It had been 28 years since Forest last won away at Chelsea but Steve Cooper’s side produced an impressive performance to rewrite the history books. Anthony Elanga struck in the 48th minute to earn The Reds their first away victory of the season and a vital three points on the road.
As for Chelsea, Mauricio Pochettino cut a frustrated figure on the touchline as his side failed to score for the first time this term – despite spending £1billion on new players since Todd Boehly took over last summer. Nicolas Jackson squandered the Blues’ best chance late on as he fired over Matt Turner’s crossbar.
Chelsea now have just four points from their opening four Premier League games, which is their worst start to a season since 1995. Here are five talking points from west London.