Let's start with two facts about Chelsea:
- In 2023, Chelsea have spent more than $800 million on transfer fees. That's more than twice as much as any other team in the Premier League.
- In 2023, Chelsea have won 0.86 points per game in the Premier League -- fewer than any other ever-present team in the Premier League.
Under its new ownership, Chelsea have spent an absurd amount of money on acquiring new players. And under its new ownership, Chelsea have been about as bad as you can be without getting relegated. That's the top-line story.
Except, well, Chelsea haven't really been that bad this season.
Under new manager Mauricio Pochettino, they're doing many of the things that usually lead to winning: creating lots of chances, only conceding a few, dominating field territory, and pressing both aggressively and effectively. However, it hasn't led to results because soccer is fickle, and performance often doesn't translate to points over a six-game stretch.
Normally, you'd preach patience in Poch. The points will come, and everything will eventually be OK. To achieve long-term success in soccer, you need to be able to ride out the inevitable random rough patches without overreacting and tearing down something that was bound to start working again. But because of the hole the club has dug itself into -- both on and off the field -- Chelsea might not even be able to wait it out.