Chelsea’s poor form this season has increased speculation that coach Jose Mourinho is about to get sacked by owner Roman Abramovich. But Chelsea’s Nigerian technical director Michael Emenalo is also in danger of losing his job. The former Enugu Rangers left back could be blamed for the poor quality of players signed this season and the shortage of talent breaking into the senior team from the youth ranks.
This article from the Independent examines the situation at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge home.
Chelsea’s nightmare start and poor transfer business could cost technical director Michael Emenalo his job
Emenalo is responsible for bringing in new faces and negotiating player departures, although his summer signings have not worked out so far this season
Jack de Menezes @JackdeMenezes Wednesday 11 November 2015
Chelsea’s nightmare start to the Premier League season could be about to claim another victim after reports emerged on Wednesday that their technical director, Michael Emenalo, is under pressure due to a perceived failure in the transfer market.
The reigning Premier League champions languish in 16th in the Premier League table, with any hopes of retaining their crown won just six months ago all but over after an alarming seven defeats in their first 12 league matches.
With the club’s owner, Roman Abramovich, currently sticking with Mourinho, the axe has fallen on a number of players so far this season, with the likes of John Terry, Nemanja Matic, Eden Hazard and Cesc Fabregas all dropped at some point for poor form.
However, Emenalo is now coming under-fire for a poor string of signings, and The Sun claim that he pay the price should the poor results continue with no signs of any major signings on the horizon in the January transfer window. The former Nigerian footballer, who has a spell with Notts County during his playing career, joined the Blues in 2007 during Avram Grant’s reign in charge of the side, before working his way up from chief scout to assistant first team coach following the exit of Ray Wilkins in 2010.In July 2011, he was promoted to his current role of technical director.
Three Chelsea flops were offloaded in the summer, with Filipe Luis returning to Atletico Madrid after an underwhelming season in London, while Mohamed Salah and Juan Cuadrado left on loan to join Italian sides Roma and Juventus respectfully.
Added to this is the under-performance of Chelsea’s summer signings this term. Radamel Falcao has made 11 appearances in all competitions yet the Colombian striker has returned just one goal which came back in August, and Mourinho’s decision to put his faith in the former Manchester United striker looks to have been an error.
Left-back Baba Rahmann, who joined the club in a £16m deal from Bundesliga side Augsburg, was singled out for criticism in last weekend’s 1-0 defeat by Stoke, while fellow defender Papy Djilobodji has made just one single appearance this season which came in the Capital One Cup win over Walsall.
After a strong start to life in London having scored on his debut, former Barcelona forward Pedro has struggled for form, having not scored since the Walsall victory in late September, while young Brazilian prospect Kenedy has made six appearance and also found the back of the net against the League One side.
The only success story of the summer has been the signing of goalkeeper Asmir Begovic, although letting Petr Cech join Arsenal – a decision sanctioned by Abramovich himself – could also be seen as an error given his impressive form for the Gunners. Begovic has already played 16 times this season, including 10 of their 12 league games, due to injury to No 1 goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.
The Bosnia-Herzegovina international has justified the Blues’ bid to bring him to London from Stoke in the summer, although it will be of slight concern to Mourinho that he has produced just two clean sheets in his last 11 outings.