Chelsea were again eliminated from the Europe’s elite competition this week after Manchester United saw them off in both legs of the UEFA champion’s League quarterfinals.
Looking at Chelsea’s squad gives you an insight that money only cannot buy success and pride. They have failed to win the competition even after investing over millions of Pounds in its squad since Roman Abromovich took over in 2004.
They have contacted and bought most of Europe’s big names in club but still struggling to win the Europe’s most lucrative competition.
In January this year, Chelsea signed Spanish icon in Fernando Torres from Liverpool worth 50 million Pounds to bolster its squad. Unfortunately, the arrival of Torres has proved to be a problem than a solution.
At Liverpool, Torres had suffered drought of goals. He was no longer a goal scorer as he used to be three or four years ago. Instead Chelsea took the risk to sign him for a hefty sum of money.
Ever since he arrived at Chelsea, Torres has failed to find the back of the net even after facing goalkeepers alone in the penalty yard box.
The decision to play £50 million Torres during Chelsea’s encounter with Manchester United seemed very much like Roman Abramovich wanted to see his star signing in action.
The Chelsea owner was in the stands in Manchester, an extremely rare appearance at one of his club’s games anywhere but Stamford Bridge.
In the second leg, Drogba was brought in the 46th minute and enhanced goal searching. His counterpart barely had a kick yet again in the blue shirt of his new club during the first half.
Drogba scored late in the second half and suddenly Chelsea were one goal away from pulling off a result that seemed so desperately unlikely when Javier Hernandez had put Manchester United 1-0 up on the night, 2-0 up on aggregate in their Champions League quarter-final tie, shortly before half-time of the second leg.
Drogba’s goal meant Chelsea was one goal away from knocking out the Premier League leaders. One goal away from advancing to yet another Champions League semi-final, their sixth of the Abramovich era.
And one goal away from stepping closer to that elusive European triumph that their Russian owner craves so much.
Cerebrations for Drogba’s goal lasted for a short period as united swept up the other end of the field, the imperious Ryan Giggs fed Park Ji-Sung, and the Korean coolly slotted home the winner.
Abromovich should not have intervened in selection procedures for the starting line-up. As a Chairman or owner, he should always solve off the pitch matters and let the coach do his job.
The trigger for departure of Jose Mourinho in 2007 was his inability to get the best out of Shevchenko, Abramovich’s weapon of choice to add European glory to their domestic supremacy during that time.
Shevchenko was not quite as goal-shy as Torres is at present, but it was not working and it did not matter that Mourinho was revered like no other Chelsea manager. He was gone.
Ancelotti has been stoic whenever questioned about his future in recent weeks. He says he does not fear the future, has a contract with Chelsea and is not concerned about losing his job.
It is admirable, it might even be true but he must have long since accepted that this might be his final season in charge at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea is adrift in the league race, bundled out of the FA Cup at home by Everton two months ago, and now crucially out of Europe.
If Ancelotti does not fear the future, it is because of his awareness of the nature of the managerial merry go-round with his boss and owner Abromovich.
A two-time Champions League winning coach, who also achieved the English domestic double last season, might not be out of work for long and it will surprise nobody if he should reappear next season as Chelsea manager.