After their lengthy unbeaten streak came to an end last week, Chelsea returned to winning ways with an FA Cup victory over fellow top-flight opposition.
But their form failed to last after a shock defeat in midweek in league action at Stamford Bridge.
In other news, The Blues’ ‘Deadline Day’ was a busy one, making one signing and sending another four players out on loan while two players departed the club on permanent deals.
Earlier in the week, Chelsea signed a new defender from one of Italy’s biggest clubs.
Two more players sealed loan exits from SW6 with 18-month moves to Scotland and Germany respectively.
Chelsea fan and Football Journalism student Jonty Colman looks at the five major talking points from around the club this week.
Chelsea 3-0 Newcastle United
The Blues ensured a place in the Fifth Round of the FA Cup on Sunday after a comfortable 3-0 victory against Newcastle United.
Michy Batshuayi put Chelsea ahead at Stamford Bridge midway through the first half after finishing off a clever team move. The Belgian forward got his second just before the interval when his shot deflected off Magpies defender Jamaal Lascelles and looped over goalkeeper Karl Darlow.
Chelsea sealed their victory with 20 minutes remaining when Spanish wing-back Marcos Alonso scored his seventh goal of the season and his third free-kick of the campaign, curling his 25-yard effort into the top corner.
Antonio Conte’s side will face Sky Bet Championship side Hull City in the next round on home soil. The tie will take place at 20:00 (GMT) on Friday 16 February and will be shown live on BT Sport.
Chelsea 0–3 AFC Bournemouth
Trying to describe what happened on Wednesday evening against Eddie Howe’s AFC Bournemouth is a challenge, as a big part of me is still in shock.
The Blues were limited on their squad selection options prior to kick-off; in attack, star striker Alvaro Morata was unavailable due to a back injury and Michy Batshuayi was otherwise engaged, as you will discover shortly, leaving Chelsea without any available strikers.
Normally, Conte would have opted to play three wingers in a fluid system, but Willian’s injury kept him out of the match. To make matters worse, Andreas Christensen was forced off during the first half with a hamstring problem, at which point, The Blues’ performance took a sudden downwards spiral.
Shortly after the interval, The Cherries took the lead thanks to Callum Wilson, who calmly tucked his shot away after being played through on goal by Jordon Ibe. Junior Stanislas doubled the visitors’ lead minutes later after he and Wilson tore apart the Chelsea backline before Stanislas beat Courtois.
AFC Bournemouth’s win was secured by ex-Blues defender Nathan Ake, who returned to haunt his former club by tapping in Stanislas’ cross at the back post.
The result saw Chelsea drop down to fourth place on goal difference below Liverpool, after their 3-0 victory over Huddersfield Town on Tuesday.
‘Deadline Day’ drama
Twice a year, Transfer Deadline Day often springs up frantic last-minute chaos and deals of the unexpected and bizarre variety.
However, on a rare occasion, Chelsea made the most of Wednesday’s Deadline Day.
They signed France international striker Olivier Giroud from Arsenal for a fee in the region of £18 million. Giroud has featured 27 times for The Gunners this season and has scored seven goals.
With Giroud’s arrival imminent, The Blues let Michy Batshuayi depart on loan for the remainder of the season to German Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund. The Belgian has scored 10 times in 25 matches for The Blues this season, two of which came against Newcastle United on Sunday.
Chelsea’s dealings did not end there as Charlie Colkett’s loan at Vitesse Arnhem was terminated. Kasey Palmer, who has spent the past season-and-a-half on loan with Huddersfield Town, saw his time in Yorkshire come to a premature end earlier this month; late on Wednesday evening, Palmer moved to Derby County on loan for the remainder of the campaign, where he will aim to guide a team to the top-flight for a second consecutive season.
Todd Kane’s loan at FC Groningen was ended and Kane has now linked up with Oxford United for the rest of the season. Youth duo Miro Muheim and Ali Suljic have also left the club. Muheim has signed for St Gallen in his native Switzerland, whilst Suljic has been released.
Blues buy Brazilian
A day before Giroud’s arrival, Chelsea also signed left wing-back Emerson Palmieri from Italian giants AS Roma.
The Brazilian has spent the last spent the last two-and-a-half seasons with The Yellow and Reds after previously playing for Santos in his native Brazil along with Italian club Palermo.
The 23-year-old has featured just twice this season for AS Roma after struggling with injury throughout the entirety of the campaign but Emerson provides good cover at left wing-back, an area where new club Chelsea had been lacking in depth.
Emerson will wear the number 33 shirt and his transfer fee is believed to be around £15 million.
Two more depart on loan
Chelsea duo Baba Rahman and Charly Musonda also exited the club this week on loan.
Baba has not played a game of senior football since January 2017 after rupturing his cruciate ligament whilst on loan at German club Schalke 04. Baba has now returned to Schalke 04 on a loan deal until the end of the 2018/2019 season.
Also leaving on an 18-month loan deal is winger Charly Musonda. The Belgain has joined Scottish Premiership champions Celtic after receiving limited first team chances under Blues boss Antonio Conte.
Musonda has made just eight appearances for The Blues’ senior side this season, scoring one goal and providing two assists in all competitions.
Join us again next week for more from the Stamford Roar!