Jurgen Klopp – Michmutters

Premier League, Chelsea transfers, rumor mill, transfer flops, Fernando Torres, Timo Werner, number nine jersey curse, Romelu Lukaku

Heavy spenders Chelsea have already been busy during the transfer window, and are almost certainly not finished despite spending €186.59m ($A270m) so far.

According to reports, the club are reportedly prepared to sign both Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Frenkie de Jong from Barcelona, ​​as well as Wesley Fofana from Leicester.

Chelsea have already signed Raheem Sterling, Kalidou Koulibaly, Gabriel Slonina, Carney Chukwuemeka and Marc Cucurella in their squad overhaul.

World-class striker Aubameyang, a former club captain of London rivals Arsenal, would represent the latest in a long line of superstar strikers to have joined Stamford Bridge – although many have struggled to make their mark.

Indeed, Chelsea’s number nine jersey has been worn by so many flops in recent years that coach Thomas Tuchel revealed that no-one will wear the number this season.

“It’s cursed, it’s cursed, people tell me it’s cursed … nobody wants to touch the No 9,” he said.

But it’s not just the number nine jersey that has been a curse at Chelsea. Dating back to the end of the last century, many of Chelsea’s big-name attacking signings have failed to make their mark.

Here are some of the great Blues flops of the modern era.

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Transfer fee: £10m ($17m AUD) from Blackburn in 1999

Playing record: One goal in 28 Premier League games

Chelsea reached deep into their pockets to lure Sutton to Stamford Bridge from relegation stricken Blackburn, for what was then a club record fee.

The striker had signed from the Rovers, where he starred alongside Premier League icon Alan Shearer, after they placed second-last in the 1998-99 season.

Haaland scores twice in EPL debut! | 01:07

But the former England international had a forgettable debut campaign with the Blues, scoring just one goal from his 28 Premier League appearances.

Sutton’s sole contribution on the scoresheet came in a 5-0 thrashing of English giants Manchester United, which was a highlight in an otherwise quiet tenure in London.

His season went from bad to worse when he failed to make Chelsea’s bench for the 2000 FA Cup Final against Aston Villa, which the Blues won 1-0.

Sutton was a one season flop at Chelsea, though, after securing a transfer to Scottish giants Celtic.


Transfer fees: €22.5m ($32m AUD) from Parma in 2003

Playing record: 10 goals from 38 games

Mutu began his Chelsea career in fine form, scoring four goals from his first three appearances for the giants of English football.

Playing in front of new fans for the first time, the Romanian scored the winning goal on his club debut against Leicester City.

But drama ensued as his relationship with Jose Mourinho reportedly reached its boiling point, with Mutu facing backlash from his manager after he claimed to be injured.

Chelsea later fired the striker after he tested positive for cocaine use in 2004, and was suspended for seven months.

Although he was not at the London club anymore, Mutu failed another anti-doping test in January of 2010, as reported by the Guardian.

Mutu, who also wore the number seven jersey at Chelsea, was handed a nine-month ban for that incident.

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Transfer fees: €43.9m ($63m AUD) from Milan in 2006

Playing record: Nine goals from 48 Premier League games

Chelsea splashed the cash once again to sign Ukrainian Andriy Shevchenko, who became the biggest signing in English football at the time.

Shevchenko, who was 30-year-old when he moved to London from Milan, was handed the number seven jersey under decorated coach Jose Mourinho.

But he failed to live up to the hype, scoring just 14 goals from 51 games during his first season with the famous London club.

Andriy Shevchenko had a forgettable spell with Chelsea.
Andriy Shevchenko had a forgettable spell with Chelsea.Source: AP

Shevchenko was loaned out to AC Milan, the club he’d signed from, during the 2008/09 season after failing to hit his stride at Stamford Bridge.

As reported by The Guardian, manager Carlo Ancelotti believed that Shevchenko was the fourth best striker at the club, just three years after he secured his record transfer.

Shevchenko was left out of Chelsea’s squad for the 2009/10 Champions League, and later returned to Dynamo Kyiv.


Transfer fees: £50m ($85m AUD) from Liverpool in 2011

Playing record: 20 goals in 110 Premier League games for Chelsea

Fernando Torres rose to footballing stardom during a successful stint at Liverpool, where he truly embodied the phrase ‘human highlight reel’.

Torres had already made his name in Spain, after being handed the Atletico Madrid captaincy at just 19 years of age.

The Spaniard left Madrid for Liverpool, although he’d return to the club at the back end of his career, and quickly proved himself to be one of the most exciting players in England.

Fernando Torres struggled to find some form after completing his move to Stamford Bridge. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

But drama struck early in 2011, as Torres completed a sensational transfer to Premier League rivals Chelsea.

The Blues again broke the British transfer record for a reported fee of £50 million, as the striker completed a mid-season move sent shockwaves throughout the league.

Hollywood couldn’t have scripted it better, though, as Torres made his club debut for Chelsea after Liverpool.

The Blues lost that 1-0 and maybe it was a sign of things to come, as Torres went on to score just 20 goals in 110 Premier League appearances for Chelsea.

But while he failed to fire, these big money moves are all about making an impact when it counts, and Torres did that in the biggest competition that world football has to offer.

While he was far from an overwhelming success at Stamford Bridge, Torres did score a game sealing goal against Barcelona in a Champions League semi-final.

Chelsea went on to win their first ever Champions League crown in the 2011-12 campaign, beating German powerhouse Bayern Munich 4-3 on penalties.


Transfer fee: £11m ($18m AUD) from Basel in 2014

Playing record: Two goals from 13 games

Mohamed Salah has cemented his legacy as a Premier League legend after a stellar career with Liverpool, but his career in England wasn’t always so successful.

The ‘Egyptian King’ made just 19 appearances for Chelsea, before he was loaned out to Fiorentina just 13-months after moving to London.

Klopp laments ‘really bad’ Liverpool | 03:00

Salah’s two best Premier League games in Blue came in a 6-0 win over rivals Arsenal, where he scored, as well as a promising showing against Stoke.

Salah was later loaned out to Roma, before securing a permanent move to the Italian capital soon after.

But the scintillating winger really took his career to the next Liverpool after he secured a well-known transfer to Liverpool.

Not only has Salah tasted success in both the Champions League and Premier League with the Merseyside club, but he’s widely considered to be one of the best footballers on the planet.

In fact he’s become so popular, the Economist revealed that more than one million Egyptians spoiled their ballots by trying to vote for Salah during the presidential election in 2018.

With many noteworthy individual accolades on the football field to speak of as well, Salah is certainly another gem that Chelsea failed to cherish when they had the chance.


Transfer fees: Around £60m ($103m AUD) from Real Madrid in 2017

Playing record: 24 goals from about 72 games

After impressive spells with European giants Juventus and Real Madrid, Morata was brought into the club as a replacement for Diego Costa.

Costa, who won two Premier League titles and scored 59 goals for Chelsea, returned to Atletico Madrid after being told he was free to look elsewhere.

Morata was another striker who had the weight of the world on his shoulders when he moved to Stamford Bridge, due to the hype surrounding his arrival.

But the Spaniard failed to make an impression on the scoresheet, scoring just 15 goals in his 48 games.

After initially signing for the club on a five year deal, Morata was eventually loaned out to Atletico Madrid on an 18-month deal.

Atletico signed him on a permanent deal later, although he was loaned out to Juventus soon after in September, 2020.


Transfer fees: €60m ($87m AUD) from RB Leipzig in 2020

playing record 23 goals in 89 appearances

Werner was one of the hottest properties on the football transfer market as European giants came looking to sign the star striker after an incredible spell at RB Leipzig.

During his four years at the German club, Werner scored 90 goals and had 40 assists from 156 competitive games.

Liverpool were also believed to be in the hunt for his signature, before he completed an expensive move to Chelsea on a five-year deal.

But the German quickly fell out of favor at Chelsea, having scored just 23 goals in 89 appearances.

With Chelsea reportedly looking to sign some strikers in the ongoing transfer window, the 26-year-old left the club and returned to RB Leipzig.


Transfer fees: £97.5m ($167m AUD) from Inter Milan in 2021

Playing record: 15 goals in all competitions from 44 games

Belgian Romelu Lukaku may have had a fairly expensive price tag to his name last year, but that didn’t stop Chelsea from making another mind-blowing investment in their future.

Once again, the Blues broke their transfer record to sign the striker from Italian giants Inter Milan.

Romelu Lukaku was a marquee signing for Chelsea, but he failed to make his mark on the scoresheet. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

With their Champions League glory still fresh in the minds of football fans, Chelsea managed to lure the powerful striker back to Stamford Bridge on an incredible transfer.

Despite their European success, Chelsea had come fourth in the Premier League the year before, but this signing was widely considered to be a difference maker.

Many believed that Lukaku could fire for the Blues after a previous stint at the club earlier in his career, before more well-known and successful stints with the likes of Everton and Manchester United.

But it was a disastrous return to the Premier League for Lukaku, who scored just eight goals before completing a loan move back to Inter Milan – and leaving the number nine jersey vacant.



Premier League news, lineups, fixtures, Chelsea vs Tottenham, team news, Manchester United, Cristiano Ronaldo, start time, scores

A thrilling opening weekend saw the Premier League return with a bang. Liverpool and Manchester United were stunned, Spurs claimed a statement victory, while Erling Haaland made his mark for Manchester City.

Now attention turns to Matchday 2. Erik ten Hag faces a huge call over Cristiano Ronaldo as the Red Devils seek to get their season off and running, while Spurs visit Stamford Bridge in the first big-six blockbuster.

Here are the big storylines to watch out for this weekend.

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Ten Hag booed after United’s horror loss | 01:18


Manchester United finished last season by losing their final six away games – a nightmare streak that ruined any hope of Champions League football. It was their worst run of road losses since March 1981 – but defeat at Brentford this weekend would make it their worst run since all the way back in 1936, when they lost ten on the trot away from Old Trafford.

But is it a serious prospect against a relative minnow in the Bees? Well, history hasn’t helped United much to start this season – their defeat to Brighton & Hove Albion last week was their first-ever loss at home to the Seagulls.

Christian Eriksen starred for the Bees last season, winning 7 of his 11 games on the park, but struggled in a false nine position for United against Brighton.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s arrival in the second half shifted Eriksen into the midfield, a move which benefited the team immensely.

Whether Erik ten Hag rushes Ronaldo into the starting line-up in search of a maiden Premier League win will be a crucial selection conundrum, especially since the Portuguese legend is still short of fitness.

But after conceding two goals in the first half in the opening week – and it could well have been three if VAR didn’t overrule a penalty early in the second half – ten Hag clearly has just as many problems in defense (especially on set pieces ).

With Brentford adding to their well-earned reputation for fighting out of tricky situations when they fought back for a 2-2 draw against Leicester, this one will likely be battled out until the final whistle sounds. It just might signal more woe for the Red Devils.

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It’s the first big-six clash of the season, and it should be an absolute beauty as Chelsea host Tottenham.

But there’s a heavy weight of history standing in their way: Spurs have won just once in their last 37 matches at Stamford Bridge. No wonder the Blues are favorites for this one, despite their ‘rusty’ 1-0 win over Everton last week – as coach Thomas Tuchel described it.

Spurs, on the other hand, fought back from an early deficit to win 4-1 over Southampton – a result that means they have scored the most Premier League in the 2022 calendar year to date.

Antonio Conte has enjoyed a full pre-season and a big transfer window in Tottenham, and this match will be a true litmus test for just how far they’ve come – and whether they can actually challenge at the pointy end this season.

“I think it’ll be a good test to mark whether they are really in the contest for the title,” former Spurs back Pascal Chimbonda told Sky Sports News.”

Perhaps the biggest key to their improvement is their depth: none of their six signings started against Saints. Some, like Richarlison, could start this time out, while Ivan Perisic might also hope to replace Ryan Sessegnon.

PREDICTED XI: Hugo Lloris; Eric Dier, Ben Davies, Cristian Romero; Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Rodrigo Bentancur, Ivan Perisic, Emerson; Heung-Min Son, Dejan Kulusevski; Harry Kane.

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For Chelsea, Thomas Tuchel hasn’t been fully happy with his transfer window so far despite some big-name arrivals in Kalidou Koulibaly, Raheem Sterling, and Marc Cucurella.

Koulibaly and Sterling both started and should start again this time out, while Cucurella came off the bench and could depose Ben Chilwell from the starting role. Christian Pulisic’s impressive bench cameo could also see him introduced to the XI.

If they fail to score from open play again, it could just nudge the new owners to push even harder to complete the signings of targets Frenkie de Jong and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Barcelona, ​​or Wesley Fofana from Leicester City – having already missed out on Manchester City’s Nathan Ake and Sevilla’s Jules Kounde.

The first heavyweight bout of the season is here, and it could have huge ramifications on the trajectories of two big-six members.

Predicted Chelsea XI: Edouard Mendy; Thiago Silva, Cesar Azpilicueta, Kalidou Koulibaly; Ben Chilwell, N’Golo Kante, Jorgino, Reece James, Mason Mount, Kai Havertz; Raheem Sterling.

Klopp rages as Liverpool cop HUGE scare; Spurs’ statement in crushing win: PL Wrap

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Frank Lampard might be a Premier League and England great, but this weekend he meets another man of similar pedigree – his old England teammate Steven Gerrard.

The duo met 34 times during their playing careers, and Lampard had the upper hand with 16 wins compared to Gerrard’s 11. Both will be desperate for victory this weekend in their first-ever managerial meeting.

For Lampard, the biggest worry – among many – is his staggeringly poor defensive record away from home.

In 38 games in charge of Everton and previously Chelsea, his sides conceded 73 goals at an average of 1.92 per 90 minutes. That includes a Blues side that would win the Champions League six months after his departure from him.

There were concerns about Everton’s squad entering this season (having sold star striker Richarlison to balance the books), and those only worsened on opening day when defenders Ben Godfrey and Yerry Mina both copped serious injuries.

Everton have since pulled a late signing swoop for Conor Coady and midfielder Amadou Onana (from Wolverhampton on Monday and Lille on Tuesday, in that order), while they added another solid defender in James Tarkowski from Burnley in pre-season.

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After Everton lost to Chelsea 1-0 and Gerrard’s Aston Villa lost to promoted Bournemouth 2-0, the pressure is on.

But where will the Toffee goals come from?

Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Andros Townsend are months away from returning, but Lampard welcomes back-up forward Salomon Rondon to the team after suspension.

And the club is reportedly chasing Southampton’s Che Adams to boost their stingy offence, having missed out on Burnley winger Maxwel Cornet who instead joined West Ham.

“We know there is a void in forward areas, we are short in numbers there,” Lampard said amid a difficult pre-season.

Arresting his poor defensive record on the road will be a key priority – but their lack of firepower up front could be just as worrying down the track.

Klopp laments ‘really bad’ Liverpool | 03:00



Premier League scores; Manchester City def West Ham, Brighton def Manchester United, Erling Haaland goals, news, scores, results, video

Erling Haaland scored twice on his Premier League debut as Manchester City opened their defense of the title with a 2-0 win at West Ham, while Manchester United were beaten 2-1 by Brighton in Erik ten Hag’s first game in charge on Sunday.

Haaland lived up to the hype since his transfer from Borussia Dortmund to give the champions a perfect start to the season in the searing heat of East London.

West Ham nearly derailed City’s title chances when they led 2-0 at halftime in the penultimate game of last season before Pep Guardiola’s men battled back for the point that ultimately edged out Liverpool at the top of the table.

But they were no match this time as Haaland immediately provided the value of City adding a proven goalscorer to their arsenal.

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Haaland scores twice in EPL debut! | 01:07

The Norwegian has been signed as the long-term successor to Sergio Aguero and started his City career just like the club’s all-time record goalscorer with a double on his league debut.

Haaland had missed chances in City’s 3-1 defeat to Liverpool in the Community Shield, but Guardiola’s warning that the goals would soon flow proved to be correct.

“We know we have a threat there. He is an incredible deep runner and finisher,” said Guardiola.

“He is adapting perfectly in the way we want to play. We are going to find him more and more and hopefully we can give him the opportunity to score more goals.”

City’s patient possession game wore the Hammers down as temperatures in the English capital soared above 30 degrees Celsius on Sunday.

Haaland took responsibility from the penalty spot to open his Premier League account after he had been brought down by Alphonse Areola.

West Ham started the second half with more attacking intent but that simply played into the hands of City’s new weapon as Kevin De Bruyne split open their defense with one pass on the counter-attack for Haaland to gallop clear on goal and slot low past Areola.


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Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United in action during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Brighton &  Hove Albion at Old Trafford on August 07, 2022 in Manchester, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United in action during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Brighton & Hove Albion at Old Trafford on August 07, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images


The contrasting fortunes of the Manchester clubs in recent seasons continued as United suffered another false dawn in Ten Hag’s first competitive game in charge.

Cristiano Ronaldo started on the bench for the Red Devils due to his lack of pre-season training with the Portuguese reportedly keen on an exit from Old Trafford to play in the Champions League this season.

Brighton thrashed United 4-0 when the sides last met in May and despite losing Yves Bissouma and Marc Cucurella for over £100 million since, the Seagulls were again too slick for United’s leaden-footed defence.

Twice in nine minutes Pascal Gross ghosted in unmarked at the back post to slot into an unguarded net before halftime.

It even took a Brighton mistake for Ten Hag’s men to find the net as Robert Sanchez slapped the ball into his own net off the unfortunate Alexis Mac Allister.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – AUGUST 07: Harry Maguire of Manchester United reacts during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Brighton & Hove Albion at Old Trafford on August 07, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

Ronaldo was given a rousing reception from an otherwise frustrated crowd, but never had a clear sight of goal to deny Brighton their first ever win at Old Trafford.

“It’s the worst possible start, to be 2-0 down at halftime at Old Trafford,” said United captain Harry Maguire.

“It’s not good enough. We huffed and puffed to get one back and we had chances to equalize. It’s a bad start for us.”

Klopp laments ‘really bad’ Liverpool | 03:00


Brentford did manage to come from two goals down to salvage a 2-2 draw away to Leicester.

The Foxes have been in turmoil heading into the season with long-serving captain Kasper Schmeichel joining Nice and rumors about the futures of James Maddison and Wesley Fofana.

Both started and Maddison’s corner teed up Timothy Castagne to score the opening goal.

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall’s stunning strike from long range then doubled Leicester’s lead early in the second-half.

But Brentford bounced back to take a point as Ivan Toney used his strength to fire home from close range before Josh Dasilva found the top corner.

LEICESTER, ENGLAND – AUGUST 07: Brentford Manager Thomas Frank celebrates with Josh Dasilva after the Premier League match between Leicester City and Brentford FC at The King Power Stadium on August 6, 2022 in Leicester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

Magpies overrun Forest, Leeds pip Wolves | 00:55



Celtic defeats Ross County, highlights, Ange Postecoglou, Liel Abada goal, Scottish Premiership, Moritz Jenz

A late flurry of goals from Celtic ensured their perfect start to the season continued, as the Hoops enjoyed a 3-1 victory over Ross County.

A goal from Kyogo Furuhasi opened the scoring in the 48th minute, but Ange Postecoglou’s side were ahead for just 10 minutes as Ross County hit back through Alex Iacovitti.

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Despite the Hoops’ dominance throughout the game, it seemed destined for a draw.

However, up stepped Celtic defender Moritz Jenz to score the all-important matchwinning goal.

The German star, on his debut for the club, scored Celtic’s second goal in the 84th minute and sparked jubilant scenes from the traveling Hoops fans.

The result was then put beyond doubt thanks to a stoppage time goal from Liel Abada who completed a scintillating attacking move that had Ross County chasing shadows as they tried to stop the move.

Jenz described the feeling of scoring the winner for his new club as a moment that “every young kid dreams of” as he looks to continue the good times in the famous shirt.

“Obviously we know we have to win all the games and I showed a lot of desire,” Jenz told Celtic TV.

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“I really wanted to go in and head the ball and score to make an amazing moment for the team and to lift the team.

“And at the end it was a goal, so at the end there was a lot of emotion.

“It was amazing, it’s what every young kid dreams of, to play in front of a fantastic crowd and then to score a goal and then to run in there, the emotion was amazing.”

While Postecoglou knows it wasn’t a perfect performance from his troops, the belief to continue fighting and chasing that winning goal pleased him most.

“I thought we played really well today, it’s a difficult place to come to, we know that and particularly it was windy today and they are a big, physical team,” Postecoglou told Celtic TV.

“But I’m really proud of the players. We stuck to our task and I thought we dominated the game in just about every aspect.

“They go up once for a corner and score, but you just have to see our reaction to know that the spirit that we had last year is still well within this group.

“Even at 2-1 we got ourselves a third, that’s the kind of team we want to be and we want to make sure that we don’t let things during the game affect what we believe in — and it gets tested at a place like this.”