The Champions. It was a magnificent Premier league triumph for Chelsea last season, but there is a sense of realism around Stamford Bridge for the current campaign. With no European football last year, they received a massive leg-up for the title, and they’ve had to rebuild their squad after a lot of condensing under Antonio Conte. You would be foolish to count The Blues out of the title race with so much talent in their side.
Conte’s Chelsea have a 5 star rating on FIFA 18. Their overall of 84 consists of 85 attack, 85 midfield and 82 defence.
It may be a smallish squad at Chelsea, but there are so many combinations you can try with the Champions, making them a great choice on FIFA 18’s Career Mode. As you step into Antonio Conte’s shoes, we give you all there is to know when setting up at Stamford Bridge.
Picking our system for Chelsea took a while. Fittingly, the spanner in the works is Diego Costa. The bullish striker is set to move to Atletico Madrid in January, but on FIFA 18, he is a fully fledged Chelsea player. So it all hangs on whether you want to keep the 28-year-old at the club. If you do, you could play him in a 4-4-2 with compatriot Alvaro Morata, but we have decided to start Costa up front on his own. Your choices are therefore a 4-3-3, 4-2-3-1, but with Chelsea performing so well last season, we have stuck with Conte’s 5-2-3.
Thibaut Courtois obviously goes in goal, but there is a small shake-up in defence. The reliable Cesar Azpilicueta moves out to right wing-back, meaning Antonio Rudiger, David Luiz and Gary Cahill are the centre backs. Marcos Alonso is unmoved on the left side of defence.
In midfield, Cesc Fabregas partners the engine N’Golo Kante. Against the bigger teams you should opt for the more defensive Tiemoue Bakayoko alongside Kante.
Costa leads the line, and he is flanked by Willian and star man Eden Hazard.
On the bench you should have Willy Caballero (OVR 79), Andreas Christensen (OVR 81), Davide Zappacosta (OVR 79) or Victor Moses (OVR 79), Tiemoue Bakayoko (OVR 82), Pedro (OVR 84), Alvaro Morata (OVR 84) and Michy Batshuayi (OVR 80).
The beauty of the 5-2-3 is it offers so many ways of playing. Its obvious use is the counter attack, with five at the back you should be able to suck in the opposition, nick the ball and break. With the pace of Eden Hazard and Willian out wide, you should create plenty of opportunities to score with Costa or Morata up front.
The formation also allows you to play the possession game, as any of your centre backs can step up and join the midfield. The system often creates plenty of room to charge forward with your wide centre backs, this has been executed brilliantly by Cesar Azpilicueta over the past 12 months. Your wing-backs will also create a natural overlap, so you can still overload the opposition despite having just two central midfielders.
If you are struggling to break a side down or in need of a goal, you have two strikers on the bench with plenty of goals and pace, which will be a nightmare for defenders when they come on.
The transfer market
Starting transfer budget: £82.2 million
Starting wage budget: £362,000
Who should go
With Chelsea having a thin squad for a club of their size, there are no obvious players to sell. Kenedy has had an indifferent past 12 months, with a loan spell at Watford ending in an injury and then being caught up and a race row during the club’s pre-season tour in China. With Abdul Baba Rahman still at the club, Kenedy falls to third choice left-wing-back, and with his wages of £42,000 a week and 81 potential, you can afford to get rid of him. Selling the 21-year-old Brazilian should collect you around £6.5 million.
Third-choice goalkeeper Eduardo is basically taking up space at the club. Sell the 75-rated goalkeeper for £2.75 million and reinvest his £56,000 a week wages. Fellow fringe players Kyle Scott, Jacob Maddox, Juan Castillo and Marcin Bulka can all be shown the door for a combined price of around £2.3 million. You’d be saving on wages of £23,000 a week.
Lastly, you must decide whether to keep troubled striker Diego Costa at the club. With the 86-rated striker worth £50 million, that would top up your transfer budget nicely, and you have Alvaro Morata to lead the line who has an 84 rating with an 88 potential.
Chelsea are renowned for sending plenty of players out on loan, with 12 players already loaned out on Career Mode. Ethan Ampadu, Martell Taylor-Crossdale and George McEachran can all join this list, and you should look to send them all to league two clubs for at least one season.
Who to sign
Transfer budget after suggested sales: £94 million
Wage budget after suggested sales: £479,000
Left wing back
Antonio Conte made it no secret that he wanted another left wing-back this past summer, and earmarked Alex Sandro as the man to come in ahead of Marcos Alonso. Given Alonso’s performances last season there is no need to replace the Spaniard, but with a FIFA 18 rating of 81 and potential of 83, he is the weakest link in our Chelsea lineup. The 26-year-old Sandro is a great man to come in, with the Brazilian international having an overall of 86 and potential of 88 on the game. For £66.8 million and £154,000 a week wages you can get the Juventus man with 93 stamina, 88 sprint speed and 86 crossing.
- Marcelo – Real Madrid, Age 29, OVR 87, POT 87, Cost: £68.6 million, Wage: £220,000
- David Alaba – Bayern Munich, Age 25, OVR 86, POT 88, Cost: £67.6 million, Wage; £132,000
- Filipe Luis – Atletico Madrid, Age 31, OVR 85, POT 85, Cost: £45.1 million, Wage: £71,000
- Jordi Alba – Barcelona, Age 28, OVR 85, POT 85, Cost: £55 million, Wage: £189,000
- Raphael Guerreiro – Borussia Dortmund, Age 23, OVR 81, POT 86, Cost: £37.5 million, Wage: £51,000
Chelsea’s purchase of Danny Drinkwater for £35 million was a panic buy on transfer deadline day, but you have more time to bring in a more adequate signing. With N’Golo Kante, Tiemoue Bakayoko and Drinkwater ‘protective’ midfielders, Cesc Fabregas is the only one who offers something different in the middle of the park. That is perhaps why Chelsea wanted to sign Everton’s Ross Barkley during the summer. We suggest going for Hoffenheim star Nadiem Amiri. The 20-year-old attacking, central or left midfielder has a 77 rating with the potential to hit 85. He will only set you back £21.7 million and his current wages are just £26,000 a week. The German can unpick defences with his 84 agility, 83 dribbling and 81 ball control.
- Leander Dendoncker – Anderlecht, Age 22, OVR 79, POT 86, Cost: £21.1 million, Wage: £22,000
- Jakub Jankto – Udinese, Age 21, OVR 76, POT 85, Cost: £21.1 million, Wage: £21,000
- Carlos Soler – Valencia, Age 20, OVR 76, POT 85, Cost: £24.3 million, Wage: £23,000
- Marc Stendera – Eintracht Frankfurt, Age 21, OVR 76, POT 85, Cost: £20.1 million, Wage: £22,000
- Tom Davies – Everton, Age 19, OVR 73, POT 85, Cost: £12.9 million, Wage: £40,000
Chelsea run things professionally, and just two players have contracts running out at the end of season – the two back-up goalkeepers. You may as well let Willy Caballero’s contract run out and replace him next summer, and you should sell Eduardo straight away. Look to bring in a young, promising goalkeeper over the course of the season.
One thing Chelsea have over their Premier League rivals is pedigree in every single competition they set foot in. Because of this, your objectives are incredibly tough with your domestic, continental and brand exposure goals all having critical importance. Domestically, you’ll be asked to lift both the Premier League and FA Cup, something Chelsea should have perhaps done last season.
As well as that the board will ask you to win the Champions Cup (Champions League). With a squad nowhere near as competitive as the Manchester clubs, you will need to bring your very best to complete a first ever treble for the club.
Your brand exposure goals should be more straightforward. You will need to gain £176 million in shirt sales over the season and earn £335 million over three seasons through competition prize money.
Your youth development and financial objectives have a low importance. You will need to sign a player to your youth squad, improve him by five overall points and then play him in five fixtures. You will need to sign a youth player early, so be sure to set up a scout network early on. Once you have one on your books, you need to use him in training at every opportunity to allow him to grow.
Financially, you need to increase the club worth by 10% within two seasons. Playing well on the pitch, winning titles and maintaining a profit margin is the key here.
Time to build a legacy
Chelsea have been a massive club ever since that first Premier League win in 2005. But it’s never been plain sailing, with plenty of managerial changes and let’s not forget the club finished 10th in the league in 2016. Even now it looks likely Antonio Conte will leave at the end of the season. Can you be the man on Career Mode to buck the trend and create stability at Stamford Bridge? Don’t get fixated on trying to win every competition in your first season. Try to bring through young players, scrap the extensive list of loan signings and get Chelsea to the top of European football.
Full Chelsea squad player ratings
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