Blues transfer spree should worry title rivals
Published 02/02/2011 | 15:35
John Terry has warned Chelsea's Barclays Premier League rivals to be very afraid following the champions' record-breaking swoop for Fernando Torres and David Luiz.
Terry believes the £75m double-swoop proves the Blues are back competing with mega-rich Manchester City in the transfer market, having reined in their spending in recent years.
Torres and Luiz were signed late on transfer deadline day, too late to play in last night's 4-2 win at Sunderland.
But both will be available for Sunday's mouthwatering clash with Torres' former club Liverpool.
Chelsea captain Terry said: "To sign Torres and Luiz is a huge statement. It has let everyone know we're in the market again, we're buying and competing with Manchester City, who have been spending an awful lot.
"There is a buzz around the camp and it is great that we're in the market again for two massive signings.
"No-one is getting too carried away but everyone is upbeat. There is a spring in our step, there is a boost around the club worldwide, not just England.
"It sets a massive tone. From a club point of view, reading things like the Bolton quotes that they didn't fear Chelsea any more - we say don't fear us at your peril."
Terry reckons it is not only Chelsea's rivals who will be worried, with the Stamford Bridge players knowing their places in the team are now under threat.
He added: "Everyone is fighting for places with some big games coming up. For myself, for the other defenders and the strikers it is very good competition and that's very important at a big club. It gives the manager great options and very difficult ones at that."
And Terry is relieved finally to be on the same side as Torres, who was the scourge of Chelsea while the striker was at Anfield.
England defender Terry told the Evening Standard: "He is one of the strongest out there. His pace is frightening, his heading is unbelievable for his height and his finishing is top drawer, as we have seen against us a few times. I'm just delighted because there were rumours that a few other clubs had been chasing him."
Chelsea's players appeared to up their game last night as they ran out 4-2 winners at the Stadium of Light.
Like Terry, manager Carlo Ancelotti believes the visitors were boosted by the new arrivals.
"Everyone is happy because everyone knows the ability of these players and everyone knows that our squad has really improved with these new players," the Italian said.
"I am sure they have more motivation for this season."
Nicolas Anelka in particular looked a man reborn playing at the tip of a midfield diamond, perhaps hinting at how Torres might fit into the team.
Ancelotti said: "I was very happy with his performance because he was very dangerous.
"It was difficult for Sunderland to mark him from that position. I think he can play there in other games this season."
Luiz should have no problems fitting in, with the Brazil defender able to play across the back four and even in midfield.
Ancelotti said: "With him, we can play from the back with more quality because he has a lot of quality. He can play also as a midfielder.
"But the most important thing with David Luiz is he can play in all the positions in the back four."
Signing Torres and Luiz not only proved Chelsea were prepared to spend big but also showed Ancelotti retained the backing of owner Roman Abramovich, despite recently overseeing the club's worst run in the league for almost 15 years.
"I have felt every time the support of the club, also when the run was not good," Ancelotti said.
"But we have been able to move on and now everyone can see that Chelsea have come back to playing good football and back to scoring and back to using our ability on the pitch."