How Chelsea have dominated the transfer window
With additions made in attack, midfield and defence, The Blues look the most improved squad from last season and if the signings click, they can become one of the most dominant teams in Europe for years to come.
While the Lionel Messi transfer saga has dominated headlines so far and the Argentine will finally stay in Camp Nou for another season, Chelsea have been quietly doing their business in the transfer market and getting their deals done early.
In other words, they have been the most active in the transfer market among top European clubs, buying some highly-rated players and they have potentially improved their team the most.
With additions made in attack, midfield and defence, The Blues look the most improved squad from last season.
If the signings click, they can become one of the most dominant teams in Europe for years to come.
The players bought so far
The Blues started off when they announced that highly-rated Ajax winger Hakim Ziyech would be signing for Chelsea even before the season was over.
Afterwards, their next target would be Germany forward Timo Werner, and he too was a Chelsea player before the season was over.
Chelsea then focused their attention on their backline, which has been a big cause of concern in the last season and were quick to pounce on Leicester City's left-back and England international Ben Chilwell.
And just after Thiago Silva had finished a successful campaign with Paris Saint Germain (where the Parisians reached the final of the Uefa Champions League after winning the domestic treble), Chelsea were Thiago Silva's club of choice.
But that wasn't all, a day after that signing, Chelsea also announced that highly-rated French centreback Malang Sarr was also signed up on a free but he is most likely to be loaned out.
But that's not all, Chelsea are still in the market for another goalkeeper, as Kepa's performances have not been anything close to his record 80 million Euro fee for a goalkeeper.
Chelsea owner, Roman Abramovic is also willing to splash the cash on another centre-back before the window closes.
Bayer Leverkusen captain and Germany midfielder, Kai Havertz, possibly Chelsea's biggest signing of the summer, was their latest coup and perhaps the icing on the cake as the announcement was made on Friday night.
How they managed so many signings
So the question is, why have Chelsea managed to buy so many players and spend so big in a down market due to the Covid-19 pandemic?
In a way, the transfer ban that Chelsea received last season was a massive blessing in disguise for them.
New head coach Frank Lampard exceeded expectations in many ways with a young squad as he took Chelsea to Champions League football by finishing in the top four.
That not only gave Chelsea additional money in their coffers, but their sales of Eden Hazard to Real Madrid and Alvaro Morata to Atletico Madrid raised them close to 200 million Euros which they had not spent.
The transfer ban gave them the necessary time to be calm and plan for the future instead of panic-buying, as they had done for Kepa.
It also gave them the opportunity to test out their highly-rated academy players, many of which they had loaned out.
Chelsea's system of buying in bulk and loaning young talent to help them develop faster for years finally paid dividends last season.
Their academy, which is now one of the best in the world, also shone bright last season and all things point to a system where the West London club can enjoy sustained success.
So all in all, it showcased that even during a crisis, the club could hold its own and remain competitive while the influx of cash from player sales and continued Champions League qualifications meant that they could spend big on their desired targets.
Werner cost Chelsea 53 million Euros while Chilwell was the second-most expensive player at 50 million Euros.
Ziyech can be considered a bargain at 40 million Euros while Sarr and Silva came in as free agents, so that was another bit of smart business done by Abramovic.
The Blues are set to spend big on Havertz in a deal that will reach 100 million Euros but around 80 million have to be paid upfront and the rest will be add ons.
That means that Chelsea have a very minimal net spend even after all these signings and they can still spend from their transfer budget this season and the previous season.
With Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations relaxed by the Uefa this time due to the global pandemic, Chelsea will look to be aggressive in the transfer market yet again.
They could also get more cash by selling players and balancing the books and one player they would dearly love to sell is their keeper Kepa.
Marina Granovskaia, the chief executive of Chelsea and often cited as the most powerful woman in football, has been a shrewd businesswoman as she has been in charge of transfers and getting the deals done so fast.
How the players do in the Premier League next season is anyone's guess but Chelsea have bought some of the highest-rated players this transfer window, and they have done their business quickly and addressed areas in the squad that needed improvements.
They have had to pay over the odds for Chilwell and Havertz but the rest of their signings have been astute pieces of business so far.
While Manchester City has been another club active in the transfer market and Everton have been the surprise package, Chelsea has been the team that has done the best business overall by far.