Gary Neville believes Chelsea now have the ‘flamboyant team’ that owner Roman Abramovich has wanted for 15 years following their lavish summer spending.
Chelsea have made a statement of intent ahead of the new season by splashing more than £200m on a host of marquee arrivals, the club sealing deals for the likes of Timo Werner, Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell and club-record signing Kai Havertz.
The arrivals of Werner and Havertz, in particular, have caused great excitement with the Germany internationals having been linked with a host of Europe’s leading clubs, with the Blues expected to play an exciting attacking game given their abundance of forward talent.
Neville believes Abramovich’s significant investment has now provided the owner with the ‘flamboyant team’ the owner has craved since taking charge at Stamford Bridge, suggesting Frank Lampard’s positive debut season as manager has reinvigorated the Russian’s passion for the club.
“Chelsea’s interesting because Roman Abramovich has wanted for 15 years a flamboyant team, and every time he’s gone for the flamboyant managers to try and get the flamboyant team, he’s been pulled back to that more methodical type of approach that’s been successful for the club,” Neville told Sky Sports.
“I think this year he’s probably investing, partly because of Covid and he sees an opportunity to exploit the market, but I think because what Frank Lampard has done has invigorated him. The academy players finally coming through, the emergence of Christian Pulisic and other young players, a team that plays a different way, that’s more energetic and really good to watch.
“More inconsistent, less reliable, you always get that when you are trying to go with younger players and a different style, but I think that’s what he wants. He wants excitement, he wants thrill around Chelsea and that’s why he’s invested this summer, to go again at this moment because he sees a team that’s got something he’s always wanted.”