Would Cup Success be Good Enough for Chelsea this Season?

There was a moment earlier in the season where it looked like Chelsea had the Premier League title at their mercy. Inspired by their Champions League triumph at the end of the 2020-21 campaign, Thomas Tuchel’s side started the new domestic campaign like a house on fire, establishing a lead at the top of the Premier League table with Manchester City and Liverpool struggling to keep up with the pace, what does the Liverpool development mean for Anfield, however? The Anfield development expansion is set to cost roughly £60 million and will now see an additional 7,000 seats be created. Increasing the capacity up to 61,000 supporters.

As we reach January, all that has changed. Chelsea sit 10 points adrift of league leaders Manchester City after 21 matches played, with Liverpool a point behind them with a game in hand. Given the strength in depth City possess, it’s hard to see a way in which the Blues could close the gap and land the Premier League title, as reflected by the exchange bet on Betdaq

With that being the case, cup competitions may be the best way for Chelsea to secure a relatively successful end to the season. Their quest for silverware has already got off to a good start, with a 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur in the first leg of their League Cup semi-final tie putting the west London outfit in a strong position to advance to the final at Wembley Stadium.

Meanwhile, the Blues face an eminently winnable Champions League knockout match-up with French side Lille, while an FA Cup third round tie at home to Chesterfield should provide easy passage to the next round of that competition too. All in all, it looks as though Chelsea are well set in terms of putting themselves in a strong position to lift a trophy. 

The question is whether or not players, staff and supporters alike will settle for domestic cup triumphs if the team end up falling well short of expectations in the Premier League. Following their Champions League success last season, it was seen as the natural next step that Chelsea should go on and push Manchester City to the wire in the Premier League, but it looks as though Pep Guardiola’s men simply have too much quality.

Chelsea would have seen how Liverpool followed up their 2019 Champions League triumph by winning the domestic title the following season, and would have wanted to emulate that. In the early days of the campaign, it looked like they might do just that, but a dip in form, along with the failure of Romelu Lukaku to live up his billing as the missing piece of Chelsea’s jigsaw, has seen them stutter over the festive period.

Tuchel may look at the Champions League as a good chance to make this season a memorable one after all, but only Real Madrid have successfully defended the European crown in the last 30-odd years of competition, so the odds are stacked against them in that sense. That said, if they dispatch Lille as expected, and receive a favourable draw in the quarter-finals, who knows what could happen?

The League Cup represents a good chance to get a trophy on the board, but there is a yearning amongst the Stamford Bridge faithful to build on last year’s Champions League triumph and win consistently at the highest level. There’s a long way to go between now and the end of the season, and Tuchel and co. have work on their hands if this campaign is to avoid fizzling out.

Anabel Cooper

Anabel is a graduate of King’s College London and upon graduating, she set out on a journey to inspire and empower women through her words. Besides working as a digital marketing expert, Anabel is a freelance copywriter.